Special Teams Spotlight: Flyers Spring Voracek

One of the things I will try and do in my Special Teams Spotlights is highlight any time I see a set entry or offensive-zone play that I haven’t seen before. The first one I found is from a Flyers game a while back. I’m not 100 percent sure how much of it was planned, but it worked so well it easily could have been.

Jakub Voracek collects the puck while Claude Giroux and young phenom Shane Gostisbehere loop around to the right. Instead of completing the loop, however, Ghost pauses and takes a pass from Voracek, who begins his own path over to the right side. Penalty killer Vladimir Tarasenko’s eyes are now pinned on the puck, and he doesn’t track Voracek over to the right.

Ghost leaves the puck for Giroux who takes it with speed and quickly hits Voracek in open space. Ideally here, Wayne Simmonds would cut across from right to left and create a pick on the St. Louis defender, to create space for Voracek to continue his route to the right with speed. But Simmonds crosses too high, planting doubt in the head of Voracek, who thinks his teammate is going to cross behind instead of in front of him. This creates confusion and turns what would be an outstanding entry, with the potential for a quality rush shot, into only an adequate one, though the Flyers do manage to set up in the zone.