NHL Wolverines free agency/trades updates

NHL Wolverines free agency/trades updates

Submitted by CalJr3000 on July 1st, 2014 at 5:22 PM

I saw the Guptill and Porter threads but thought it might be a good idea to make a comprehensive thread since a few more deals have gone down and more Wolverines hockey alumni are on the move:

Trades:

Free Agents:

So You've Decided to Watch Some Hockey: A Michigan Primer

So You've Decided to Watch Some Hockey: A Michigan Primer

Submitted by Adam Schnepp on March 19th, 2014 at 11:47 PM

YES DO MORE THINGS THAT MAKE PEOPLE STAND UP IN FRONT OF YOUUUUU

So you’ve turned your calendar to March and watched some snow melt (finally), and your mind has naturally turned to brackets and the anxiety that goes hand-in-hand with single elimination contests. If you’ve thought about single elimination games that involve ice and rubber spheres instead of hardwood and rubber spheres then we’re on the same page.

At 3pm on Thursday Michigan plays Penn State, the lowest seeded team in the Big Ten Tournament and the team that has given Michigan more problems than first-ranked (in the nation) Minnesota. If Michigan wins, there’s a 96% chance they make the NCAA Tournament. If they lose, that drops to 40-50%. Pretty straightforward and terrifying.

If this is the first hockey game you’ve watched or just the first one you’ve watched this season then this guide’s for you. Think of this as a time investment. If you read it and Michigan wins on Thursday then you’re all set for the NCAA Tournament! If you read it and they don’t win then you must be some sort of human jinx, please don’t watch the basketball team.

Who to watch on offense:

#17 JT Compher, C, FR/#18 Andrew Copp, C, SO

I couldn’t split these two up and put one in the category below because they jointly set the tempo for Michigan. Both are going to forecheck hard enough to create offense, though they can create off the cycle as well. Both of these guys have the mindset of a third-line center with the hands and hockey IQ of a first-liner.

And if those guys aren’t on the ice?

#27 Alex Guptill, LW, JR

Put the puck on his stick and he’s a potential NHLer. Take the puck away from him and, uh, results may vary. He was a healthy scratch once this year essentially because he was putting in zero effort on the defensive end, but he’s since rebounded. He’s not going to win any awards for “best defensive forward,” but he has an incredible ability to move with the puck in tight spaces and keep it away from defenders.

Who to watch on defense:

#37 Mac Bennett, D, SR

This isn’t supposed to be a slight to the other defensemen but actually yeah, it’s kind of a slight to the other defensemen; Bennett is the only one that doesn’t make me nervous when he’s on the ice. He’s a senior, but more important is that he’s made strides in terms of playing a simpler, more balanced game. He’s a calming influence on a very, very young d-corps who knows when to rush the puck and how not to turn it over in the defensive zone as much as the other defensemen.

And if he isn’t on the ice?

#22 Andrew Sinelli, D, JR

He used to be a forward but the transition may be the best thing that’s ever happened to him during his time at Michigan. Sinelli will need to continue to work on little things like gap control, but he’s got the skating ability to hang with most anyone. He’s been really impressive since switching positions mid-season.

What about that guy who lets people use composite materials to throw pieces of rubber at him?

#35 Zach Nagelvoort, G, FR

Since Compher came in with considerable hype I’d say Nagelvoort is the real surprise contributor this season. He wasn’t supposed to be playing this season, but an injury to starter Steve Racine pushed him into the lineup and he hasn’t relinquished that spot since. Nagelvoort likes to handle the puck near his net and has a very good glove hand. His positioning is very good and he stays square to shooters. Hard to ask for more than that from a freshman.

What about the team, the team, the team?

Offense:

Coin flip. Averaging 3.12 goals/game is good enough for 20th in the nation, but which offense shows up is anyone’s guess. They can hang six on anyone in the nation or they can score one, and they’ve done both against great and terrible competition respectively.

Defense:

Coin flip. They’re giving up 2.56 goals/game, which again places them 20th in the nation. Some nights they look unstoppable (see last Saturday’s game against Minnesota) and some nights they look beyond confused (see the entire Great Lakes Invitational).

Power play:

Michigan has scored on 26 of their 129 opportunities (20.16%). This places them 17th in the nation, with the caveat being that every team ahead of them has had more power play chances. They’ve looked better in recent weeks as Luke Moffat has emerged as a legitimate special teams scoring threat. Eight of his 13 goals have come on the power play, so watch for #9 when Michigan has the man advantage.

Penalty kill:

While it’s not the worst in the nation, it’s the team’s weak spot when considering that they’re ranked somewhere around 20th in the nation in all other team scoring categories. Michigan has killed 105 of 129 penalties (81.4%), which ties them for 35th nationally with American International, which is a school that I did not know existed until I just wrote it down.

Tl;dr. What do I really need to know?

Michigan has to beat Penn State if they want to make the NCAA Tournament and start The Streak™ over. We don’t know which version of Michigan will show up; it will either be the team that can beat anyone in the nation or it will be the team that gifted Penn State two of its three B1G wins. 

Michigan - Ohio State: Open Thread

Michigan - Ohio State: Open Thread

Submitted by Sac Fly on February 28th, 2014 at 5:59 PM

Another must win game tonight at Yost. Matt Tomkins in net for Ohio State for the first time since January 24th. The game is on BTN.

 

Forwards

Guptill-Compher-DeBlois

Motte-Copp-Hyman

Di Giuseppe-Nieves-Moffatt

Kile-Lynch-Allen

 

Defense

Downing-Serville

Clare-Lohan

De Jong-Sinelli

 

Goalies

Nagelvoort

Racine

 

Audio

Michigan - Penn State: Open Thread

Michigan - Penn State: Open Thread

Submitted by Sac Fly on February 22nd, 2014 at 6:17 PM

Must win game tonight for the Wolverines with some big changes in the lineup. The game is on FSD+.

 

Forwards

Motte-Copp-Hyman

Kile-Compher-DeBlois

Di Giuseppe-Nieves-Sinelli

Shuart-Lynch-Moffatt

 

Defense

Downing-Bennett

Clare-Lohan

Serville-Chiasson

 

Goalies

Racine

Nagelvoort

 

Audio

Goal-by-Goal Analysis: Northern Michigan at Michigan 3/8/13

Goal-by-Goal Analysis: Northern Michigan at Michigan 3/8/13

Submitted by Adam Schnepp on March 12th, 2013 at 11:20 PM

 

A cursory glance doesn't reveal many similarities between Michigan basketball and Michigan hockey these days. After all, one team took the court this weekend with a share of the B1G title on the line and fans that lined up something like 22 hours before tip-off. The other team took the ice this weekend with no title on the line and not even a live televised feed of their games. 

Take a closer look, though, and some broad similarities appear. Basketball and hockey are both games of runs. It's just the way the game goes when there are no pre-established offensive and defensive turns. You hit and you'll get hit back. You exert pressure and that pressure will eventually be exerted on you. Michigan basketball ended on the wrong side of a run, suffering a knockout punch that was one part bad luck and two parts missed opportunity. Michgan hockey, on the other hand, survived the inevitable pressure Northern Michign exerted after Michigan took a 3-0 lead.  

A 3-0 first period lead wasn't something the Wolverines could rest on. Too many times this season they've taken an early lead only to be swept away by the undertow of another team's run, late goals and late pressure that were too much to overcome. With their postseason hanging in the balance Michigan responded on Friday, doing what was sufficient and holding serve in the third period to weather the storm and in the process made that dim glimmer of hope we hold that Michigan can extend its NCAA tournament streak to 23 consecutive seasons a little brighter.

1st Period

06:39 Northern 0 Michigan 1: PPG Jon Merrill (2) from Boo Nieves (20) & Phil Di Giuseppe (17)
Merill starts the rush and moves the puck to PDG, who carries the puck down low. Northern is in a basic box on the PK and they move down to compensate for PDG. Norther does do a good job of taking away the pass to the slot, but the vulnerability they open is at the point. By all moving below the dots in the faceoff circle they make it easy for PDG to wheel up the boards and pass it back to Merrill.
Merrill waits for Boo to cycle up and passes it to him above the faceoff circle. It's really Boo that makes this play possible, as he skates to his left and draws the attention of three Northern defenders, two of which move left with him.
Merrill moves laterally back to his right and Boo dishes to him because he has a wiiiiiiiiide open shooting lane. The shot takes bounce off of a Northern player in front of the net to get in, but it finds the back of the net nonetheless.
 
15:11 Northern 0 Michigan 2: PPG Kevin Lynch (8) from A.J. Treais (13) & Alex Guptill (16) 
Treais has the puck at the point and moves it into the corner to Guptill. Guptill carries up and back down the boards before cutting towards the slot. This draws two defenders and opens up a pass to Copp in the corner.
Guptill's decision to skate into the slot means that the defender who should be covering the point has to collapse on net and cover him, even if only for a second. That same defender has to double back and can't get to the point in time to stop a slapshot from Treais, who just got the puck back on a pass from Copp.
Treais' slapshot is stopped but a huge rebound is kicked out directly to Lynch. He's unchecked and snaps a shot past the goaltender, who can't do much about it since he's already hit the ice. 
 
18:30 Northern 0 Michigan 3: SH Kevin Lynch (9)
Michigan loses a board battle but it ends up benefitting the Wolverines as the Northern player throws a cross-ice pass to no one. Northern's point man tries to come and chop at the puck to keep it in the zone but Szuma gets to it first and pokes it out of the Michigan zone.
Northern regroups and gathers the puck in front of their bench, but two players run into each other as one goes off for a line change. Lynch sees the opportunity and charges hard, stealing the puck and creating a breakaway.
Y'ALL JUST GOT TREY BURKE'D
Lynch fakes the shot and Northern's goalie takes the bait. He then glides through the crease and flicks the puck into the twine abyss available over the goaltender's left pad.
 
2nd Period
 
04:57 Northern 1 Michigan 3: Kory Kaunisto (5) from Wade Epp (4) & Jake Johnson (2)
Northern wins an offensive zone draw but Trouba is the first to the puck. He tries to pass behind the net to what momentarily looks like an open man, but he gets hit as he's passing and ends up turning the puck over. I don't fault him for the play Trouba tried to make, as passing behind the net seemed like a better play than blindly passing behind himself.
No Michigan players have skated much since the faceoff. With four defenders around the net and no one covering the point (the closest M player is circled in blue) Northern moves it back to the blueline for what should be a wide open shot.
The puck gets tipped and is redirected past Racine. There's really not much he can do to stop this one.
 
16:00 Northern 2 Michigan 3: Darren Nowick (6) from Stephan Vigier (14) & Ryan Daugherty (11)
Northern starts their breakout and carry the puck with speed through the neutral zone. As the puck carrier cuts towards the middle of the ice Bennett picks him up, though there are two circle players that could have done so. Bennett should have continued skating backwards in order to cover the front of the net but didn't.
The guy cutting towards the middle passes to the wing, who rips a shot through the Michigan defense.
Racine makes the initial save but gives up a rebound and pays dearly. The guy circled is the one that was able to slip in behind the defense because of Bennett's blown coverage, and he tucks the puck in to narrow Michigan's lead to one.
 
3rd Period
 
No scoring

I'll try to get a GBGA of Saturday's game up....sometime. Not sure when, but I'm working on it. Look forward to more pictures, more laughs, and most importantly moooooooooore goals.

(Burke photo cred: Julian Gonzalez, Detroit Free Press)