Friday, April 6, 2012

Ahead of his Time

The mark of a good coach in any sport is demonstrated by his/her ability to identify problems and react accordingly.

In February 1952, with his power play on the skids, Boston Bruins coach Lynn Patrick was forced to confront such a problem. When his club failed to score with the advantage in a contest against Chicago, Patrick knew he would have to take action to resolve the problem of goal production on his power play.

His solution was something other teams were not implementing at the time. To get his power play back on the tracks, Patrick used five forwards in an attempt to increase his offence. Other coaches in the NHL would place one forward at the point when a penalty was called against the opposition, but Patrick took it one step further.

Patrick's five-man unit was composed of Dave Creighton, Red Sullivan and Ed Kryzanowski up front. On the blueline were Milt Schmidt and Johnny Peirson.

Clearly, Lynn Patrick was ahead of his time.

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