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The Rook Learns “The System” September 16, 2010

Posted by calvin in Uncategorized.

In today’s installment of the Rook’s experiences at training camp, we find out what happens when Rook is exposed to “The System”…

[everybody is gathered in the video room]

Big Scary Head Coach: Ok, boys, you’ve had a couple of days on the ice. Today we’re going to teach you about “The System”.

[revered silence falls over the assemblage]

Big Scary Head Coach: We’re going to do something a little different this year, guys. We’re going to change the game. [players look around worriedly at each other] The NHL is becoming a game of bigger, faster, and we only see one way to win: to take the opponents’ games, and shove it right back in their face. No more of this zone coverage, no more of this man-on-man. We’re not even going to have forward lines and defense pairings working on their own. We play as a five-man unit.

[he begins mapping out scenarios on several whiteboard templates of the ice surface as the players murmur to each other]

Smitty: What the f— is he talking about?

Dougie: Hell if I know.

Rook: I get it.

[both turn to him in surprise] Smitty/Dougie: You DO?!?

Rook: Yeah. It’s not that hard. [he points to one of the white boards] See, when you come up the right side I’m gonna stretch the D out and cross…

Revered Veteran Captain: You’re doing good so far, Rook. Then I’d throw it in the open lane.

Rook: Then I’m gonna fill in for one of our D so they can come down the side boards to take the shot.

Revered Veteran Captain: Exactly. Nice job, bud.

Rook: Thanks, man.

[Smitty and Dougie look on, astonished]

Rook: It’s all there, you can see it if you look at how Coach is drawing it up.

[Smitty and Dougie stare at the whiteboard dubiously]

Rook: See, I’ll show you another one. That one. [he indicates a play mapped out underneath the other one] For that one all three of the forwards are gonna circle around at the blue line, then the center is gonna charge, then put a drop pass to the left winger, who’ll drop it to the D, then both the center and the winger are gonna run the net while the right winger swings around behind and the other D stays back to cover our zone in case something goes wrong.

Smitty: What?

Revered Veteran Captain: You got it, kid.

Rook: [smiles]

Revered Veteran Captain: [leans over to Slightly Less Scary Assistant Coach and starts whispering to him]

Rook: [to Smitty and Dougie] Want me to explain it again?

Dougie: Not right now. Lemme look at ’em a little, see if I can figure out what you’re talking about.

Big Scary Head Coach: I’m gonna go through these scenarios one by one. I’ll explain in detail what each guy should do in each situation, and then answer any questions you have. We’ll go through more of these as camp wears on, so don’t worry if this isn’t clear now. [he goes through each diagram, then dismisses the team]

[Rook stands to leave, Slightly Less Scary Assistant Coach and Revered Veteran Captain stop him]

Slightly Less Scary Assistant Coach: Revered Veteran Captain told me you’ve really caught on to “The System”.

Rook: [shrugging] Yeah, I guess so. It doesn’t seem very hard.

[Slightly Less Scary Assistant Coach and Revered Veteran Captain share a look]

Slightly Less Scary Assistant Coach: Would you mind coming back in later on today? We’re going to be having a special session with a few of the players to look at some of the plays we’ve drawn up before we present them to rest of the boys.

Rook: They want ME to help THEM? Holy crap holy crap holy crap. Um, Sure.

Revered Veteran Captain: Cool. [claps Rook on the shoulder] See you then, kid. Go get some lunch.

Rook: Yeah…



1. Richard - September 16, 2010

Apparently the other knives were duller…

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