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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Strategy & Tactics – Part Deux

So remembering; that Strategy represents your team’s basic means of achieving its intended outcomes in any given end, and provides direct tangible guidance as to the various shots that you should select.

We have developed the 4 steps of the strategic planning process – Strategic profile, Game Plan, End Plan and Shot Selection, right?
As we discussed; an End Plan represents your team’s specific blueprint for the current end, clearly defining your intended objective(s), along with particular strategy that you will use to achieve them. We need now to clear up what realistic objectives with and without last rock will be.

Realistic Objectives With last Rock
We must break the objectives into our 4 stages of an end while understanding that the objective is good there can be inherent risks to each selection.

Strategy Type
Realistic Objective
Inherent Risk
Blank End/Score 1
Lowest Odds of Scoring 2
Probing (-)
Score 1 or Score 2
Limited odds of scoring more than 2
Probing (+)
Score 2/Score 1
Decent Odds of stealing against
Score 2/ Score 3 or more
Highest Odd of stealing against

Realistic Objectives Without last Rock

Strategy Type
Realistic Objective
Inherent Risk
1 against/Blank end
Lowest Odds of stealing end
Probing (-)
1 against/steal 1
Limited odds of stealing end
Probing (+)
Steal 1/1 against
Decent Odds of Multiple against
Steal 1/Steal 2 or more
Highest Odds of Multiple against

So to better understand the strategy type we need to use a bit clearer language which might better explain the type. In the simplest terms we can put it together like this;

Protecting – STOP

Probing (-) – Be prepared to stop

Probing (+) – Be prepared to GO

Pursuing – GO

Simple right!
Your Game Plan identifies a ‘probable range’ of strategic options for each stage of the game. It applies until one team is able to build what you would consider to be a ‘sustainable lead’.  What a “sustainable lead” means to your team is up to your team, be it up 2 or be it up 3 or more is for you to discover. Your End Plan allows you to identify the ‘particular strategy’, that is most suitable at that time. In a relatively close game this will come from the ‘range’ of strategies built in to your Game Plan.

So what is the best way to decide on an End Plan? Well, there are a few steps you need to review. First you MUST evaluate the scoreboard, understanding the scoreboard will set the tone for the end plan and in some cases even decided the game plan. Second, you need to revisit the key moderators and thirdly you need to consider the momentum of the game. If you can continue the momentum you can take a team out of there game and on the other hand if you can break a team’s momentum you can kill not only an end for them but often a whole game.

As stated the Scoreboard is obviously the dominant factor to consider when deciding on a particular End Plan. In those cases when you do not consider a ‘sustainable lead’ to exist, you will need to consider other factors. The realities of the playing conditions and/or your opponent will often play a role in your decision. These factors will sometimes suggest the more aggressive option, and other times will suggest the safer one. With that momentum is a huge contributing factor. By definition, Momentum is the ‘positive flow’ that results from an edge in performance, or from a favorable break. So in curling if it’s on your side considers the more aggressive option; if it’s on their side consider the safer one. In other words; USE COMMON SENSE!

The scoreboard plays the major role throughout the game but generally it should be your only consideration once the games reaches stage 4 and 5. Teams that are serious about winning plan in advance for ALL potential scoreboard situations.

Does your team?

So in our next article we will be dealing with Shot Selection – however before we go there and in relation we need to review the “GREAT DEBATE” in curling.

In the 8th end of a theoretical tied game which can include 1 point behind with or 1 point ahead without; what does your TEAM typically prefer?

Have you discussed it with your team? Have you come to a consensus of what the TEAM likes? Better yet do you know why? Does the why play to your teams strengths?

Ask your TEAM these questions; I think you may be surprised.

Oh and by the way, here is a hint regarding down one with or up one with out – there is NO right answer!


Anonymous said...

SPOT ON - Great stuff!

Anonymous said...

Who is framing these for you, Chris?

It is very simple and straightforward, but right on the money.

Wheelchair Blog 2 said...

Thank you to the blogger above, now for the secret....I am. At this point in the discussions, Bill is in Denmark and Jim is busy. So I am taking my knowledge as both an athlete and a coach and putting the background work down for you guys.

I thank you for your kind comments.

Anonymous said...

Amazing job Chris. Keep it up. People are very appreciative of everything that you are doing to make this blog the best ever. It's very evident why you were able to skip your team to gold in Torino. You should be back in the lead. Canada needs you!

Anonymous said...

You and Jim.....been beat up before, but it WOULD be interesting!

Have you been throwing much in the past couple of years, Chris?

Wheelchair Blog 2 said...

So for those of you wondering if I have been playing or throwing?

The answer is YES, I mean after all I did work in a curling club for 3 years.

During that time I threw everyday at least once, I have been playing on a number of different teams and coach many others.

I have even had a chance to throw and play a few games against international teams. Yes, I have been playign just stepped out of the wheelchair spot light for the time being.

On tot he next adventure...Maybe hockey?

Anonymous said...

The timing for a new approach to Team Canada is now.

After a poor performance, it is time to review the whole Program.....no slam, especially given the success of the past few years, but that was then, and this is now.

We have not even heard from Joe or Wendy regarding LAST season, never mind NEXT season.

I am sure there have been many post-mortems after Korea.

t would be nice to know if others even have a chance at next season (or at least prior to 2014).

Anonymous said...

I think one of the problems you could have, Chris, is the time issue. I watched Darryl and Jim (particularly Jim) throw almost every day in Richmond.

How would you find the time, with other commitments?

Anonymous said...