Patrick Roy rewarded for his aggressiveness

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Patrick Roy didn't coach by the book on Monday and was rewarded with a come-from-behind win.

A little more than halfway through his debut season behind the Colorado Avalanche bench, and we've already learned quite a bit about Patrick Roy.

We've seen that he can completely lose his mind behind the bench. We've seen him get into verbal disagreements with other coaches. And we've also seen some evidence that he has a chance to be a pretty good NHL coach.

The latter was on display on Monday night during Colorado's 2-1 win in New Jersey. He was bold, aggressive and he seemed to go against conventional thinking when trying to tie the game in the closing minutes.

Most coaches in the NHL are overly conservative when it comes to pulling their goalie in a comeback attempt and don't usually do it until the final minute. More often than not, it ends up being too late and they don't give themselves enough of an opportunity to tie the game.

On Monday, with the Avalanche trailing 1-0, Roy decided to pull starting goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere with more than 2 1/2 minutes to play. It resulted in constant pressure in the offensive zone (against a New Jersey line that had been on the ice for a while and was clearly starting to get exhausted), and eventually the game-tying goal with 1:49 to play.

With the game already tied, Colorado was able to maintain its offensive zone pressure in the final minute and drew a penalty when New Jersey's Andy Greene was sent off for slashing Matt Duchene. That power play carried over to overtime, where Ryan O'Reilly scored the game-winner just 28 seconds in.

The point here is that most of this -- if not all of it -- happened because Roy was aggressive in getting the extra attacker on the ice. There is plenty of data out there to suggest that coaches should be more aggressive when they pull their goalie in a comeback attempt, even if the returns aren't huge, but it almost never happens.

Roy and the Avalanche pulled it off on Monday and earned two big points in the playoff race.

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