"His teams go at the net, shoot for rebounds, make plays, and really emphasize the defense being an active part of the offense," [college hockey analyst Dave] Starman said. "His use of weak side [defensemen] to pinch and extend plays is a huge component to their offensive success, and defensive as well, as they don't retreat and regroup as much as other teams did."
Oshie and Starman might as well have been describing the four teams still playing in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Chicago Blackhawks, Anaheim Ducks, New York Rangers and Lightning all play with pace, control the middle well, activate their defensemen, and let players showcase their skill.
The Flyers want to be like those teams. Hextall said Hakstol can get them there because he's done it for 11 years in college. That he's never done it in the NHL is of little consequence. If Hextall is right, Hakstol will.