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Phil Housley - How bad was he?

Phil Housley   

57 members have voted

  1. 1. How bad was Phil Housley as coach of the team?

    • Too early to tell
      16
    • Ron Rolston looks good in comparison
      8
    • Worst coach in Sabres history
      4
    • Worst coach in NHL history
      2
    • He didn't have the resources that Head Coach Ralph Krueger has
      2
    • He was bad, not all time bad though
      25


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I'm not a pessimist, but by game 25 last year, on November 27th, Housley had the Sabres at 17-6-2.  Krueger has the Sabres at 2-0, on October 7th.

I know this poll attempts a trial of Housley, but without the context of a substantially similar roster one year later, it is too early to tell if coaching makes the difference for this team and condemns Housley.  I like what I'm seeing so far.

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It's a different roster, but on paper it's about the same as what Housley was working with, maybe even a little worse. Olofsson is playing great, but he has no resume in the NHL at all. None of the other new guys were superstars in their previous uniforms, either. 

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10 hours ago, Randall Flagg said:

Miller/Joki being what we'd hoped and Scandella/Risto bouncing back are all things that collectively could have made last year's team into a good one, and they have all happened in our brief two games.

See I don't think they just happened, I think Phil asked way too much from his D and they fell apart. Kreuger seems to want his D to play D rather than Housley's idea of having the D basically be him. We play a simpler, more balanced, disciplined, and more defensively responsible game this year. We are back to a simple coaching idea of do your job, play positionally and work together - like a lot of coaches teach - and so far it works.

The litmus test on Housely has to be the power play though. We had a good one before he got here, it sucked under him, and now it's looking spectacular. Sure, Dahlin is a force there and Olofsson gives them a sniper, but some of that has to be on Phil. Never understood why he could never seem to get that unit right.

Under Housley we were a team lacking identity. A bunch of running around scramblers frequently out of position and looking clueless. The very opposite of what we are seeing under Kreuger. 

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2 minutes ago, PerreaultForever said:

See I don't think they just happened, I think Phil asked way too much from his D and they fell apart. Kreuger seems to want his D to play D rather than Housley's idea of having the D basically be him. We play a simpler, more balanced, disciplined, and more defensively responsible game this year. We are back to a simple coaching idea of do your job, play positionally and work together - like a lot of coaches teach - and so far it works.

The litmus test on Housely has to be the power play though. We had a good one before he got here, it sucked under him, and now it's looking spectacular. Sure, Dahlin is a force there and Olofsson gives them a sniper, but some of that has to be on Phil. Never understood why he could never seem to get that unit right.

Under Housley we were a team lacking identity. A bunch of running around scramblers frequently out of position and looking clueless. The very opposite of what we are seeing under Kreuger. 

Who was Phil's PP guy? Legitimately asking. Does Ralph run this one? 

And I agree that it's looking spectacular, but we really do need to log a few more games before we declare it a good PP, and our bad players fixed etc. 

Tonight really could have been lifted straight out of last January. It's a long season, and I'm excited too, but if we get too sure of things at the highs I shudder to think what happens if we have a bad two week stretch

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I don't think you can underestimate the impact of having 2/3 of a 2nd line.  

Adding Olofson and Mojo ( I like his neutral zone play a lot) really shifted some of the pressure on our 1st line.

 

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Maybe his system was too complex, but to me, he just seemed, well uninspiring.  You have to have that as a coach.  

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20 hours ago, ddaryl said:

Phil's style just did resonate with this team IMO..  The team gave up on him and that's usually a tell tale sign of a coach.

He had style?  He was like a sphinx with a perpetual grin.

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17 hours ago, Randall Flagg said:

Who was Phil's PP guy? Legitimately asking. Does Ralph run this one? 

And I agree that it's looking spectacular, but we really do need to log a few more games before we declare it a good PP, 

I would have thought Housley, being a PP guy as a player would have had a big hand in it. Certainly, when it struggled he'd have had to have stepped in and advised/designed/whatever. But one can't be sure I guess.

There are several big differences, whoever designed it. One, Dahlin runs the point much better than Risto did. Better passer and much quicker with his passes and decisions. Gives it a quicker pace and a better flow. Second, we have a legit trigger man added in Olofsson. Now teams can't just try to take Jack out of the equation, there are guys who can put the puck in the net all over and at times Jack can simply decoy or draw defenders. The trick will be to see if/when teams realize they have to key on Olofsson, will we adjust and have Jack shoot more from his side. Lastly, and this was my critique of Housley's PP all year, there is a lot of motion to this one. We move the puck a lot and quickly and in doing that maintain possession. It certainly won't score every game, but it does look like it'll be a true threat and in having that threat, teams might be more reluctant to take liberties which will open up the 5 on 5 game as well. It is a big big thing.

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The biggest difference in the pp is there's just 1 point person, 2 wings, 1 net front guy, and 1 down low floater. They are all expected to shift as necessary. This is as opposed to 2 points, 2 wings, 1 net under Housley that involved no movement but catch on the points. 

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We will never know if PH was a bad coach.  What I do know is that he asked his players to do things that they could not do, at least on a consistent basis.  I'm not sure if that really reflects on him as a coach, or the roster?  He did not change what he was asking of the players after it was obvious that they could not deliver it.

It won't be a fair comparison if PH coaches another NHL team ever, since the players will be different and the results will likely be different.

Edited by New Scotland (NS)
I don't type very goodly ...

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22 hours ago, Skibum said:

It's a different roster, but on paper it's about the same as what Housley was working with, maybe even a little worse. Olofsson is playing great, but he has no resume in the NHL at all. None of the other new guys were superstars in their previous uniforms, either. 

This is definitely a better roster than Housley had in 18-19.  The defensive group is much better and we should be able to agree that Olofsson is a very helpful addition, regardless of him not having an NHL track record.  Johansson is a positive addition as well, though Pominville did head out.

I don’t get why I keep seeing people say that the roster hasn’t really improved.

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2 minutes ago, Curt said:

This is definitely a better roster than Housley had in 18-19.  The defensive group is much better and we should be able to agree that Olofsson is a very helpful addition, regardless of him not having an NHL track record.  Johansson is a positive addition as well, though Pominville did head out.

I don’t get why I keep seeing people say that the roster hasn’t really improved.

People were so focused on getting a 2c that they've become blind to all other moves in a way. When 2c didn't happen, they bought into the narrative the roster was basically the same. 

 

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1 minute ago, LGR4GM said:

People were so focused on getting a 2c that they've become blind to all other moves in a way. When 2c didn't happen, they bought into the narrative the roster was basically the same. 

And it’s looking like a stop gap veteran 2C may have be added anyway.  Johansson has looked like he can probably be the guy who holds down the fort in that role until Mitts/Cozens are ready to take it over, as long as he can stay on the ice.

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Personally I couldn't stand Housley as a person. His pressers were so deadening and he always came off as a complete turd-polisher. I couldn't see him inspiring an acorn, much less a hockey team and it's clear he lost the room last year.

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