Passing Hockey Tip
There’s something about hearing your own name that grabs your attention like nothing else. Psychologists call this the ‘Cocktail Party’ phenomenon. No matter how much noise is around you, or how distracted you are, you always seem to overhear your own name from a conversation across the room.
It’s the same on the ice. For example, when your linemate has just gained control of the puck after a tough battle in the corner. Now he’s ready to make his next play. If at that moment he hears you call out his name, he will immediately recognize it, look for the player calling it out, and pass them the puck.
That player will be you.
Some players will just yell ‘In the open’ or ‘Pass it’ or bang their stick on the ice as if it’s some sort of secret code that the other team is blissfully unaware of. These methods will let your linemate know that you’re ready for a pass, but they are nowhere as effective as calling out their name.
It may seem a little strange at first and will likely take a little time before it becomes natural. Once it becomes habit, you will be at the receiving end of a lot more passes, and be more involved in the play.
If you don’t know the names of the players on your line, ask them!
Watch out for that sneaky guy on the other team that knows your name and calls it when you have the puck and your head is down. If you blindly pass him the puck, he will be laughing at you for the rest of your shift, the rest of the game, and in the bar afterwards. Be sure to take a look first to make sure you have a clear pass to your own teammate, no matter what you hear on the ice.
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