Coach's Call: Stanley Cup finals Game 2

June, 5, 2011
6/05/11
12:40
AM ET

ESPN's Barry Melrose breaks down the top three coaching moves made in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup finals.

1. Malhotra returns: Canucks coach Alain Vigneault's decision to bring back Manny Malhotra turned out to be more important than I thought it would be. First, I thought it would be more for sentimental reasons, to give Malhotra a chance to suit up for a Cup finals game. But he played 7:26 of ice time and they were important minutes, particularly for winning draws.

2. Defensive pairings: One thing that I would like to know is why Vigneault decided not to play defenseman Keith Ballard. Andrew Alberts is a big body and can throw checks, but it's not like Ballard has played poorly in the postseason.

3. Power play shows some life: I think it's a sign of a good coach when he tries new things to give his team a jolt. Boston coach Claude Julien did that by trying Zdeno Chara in front of the net on the power play; it may not have worked the way the Bruins hoped, so in Game 2, he moved Chara back to the point. The end result: a power-play goal.

Barry Melrose

NHL studio analyst
Former NHL player and coach Barry Melrose is an NHL studio analyst for ESPN.

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