Monday, January 5, 2009

Defense Tips: Playing the Point

When you’re playing defense, and the puck is in the offensive zone, your job is to keep the puck in the zone. Here's a few defense tips on playing the point.

When the other team rings the puck along the boards towards the blueline, your first priority is stop the puck, then try to get a shot on goal. If the puck gets by you and crosses the blueline, your entire team has to clear the zone to prevent an offside.

Here’s a few tips from CBC’s Think Hockey series:

  • Position yourself just in front of the blue line
  • Keep your stick on the ice
  • Keep your shoulders and skates facing into the offensive zone.
    Don’t turn your body towards the boards
  • Stop the puck with your stick perpendicular to the boards, not at an angle.
  • Get control of the puck, then bring it away from the boards towards the middle of the ice.
  • Get your shot through to the net.
  • Shoot low for a possible deflection or rebound.
Getting your shot past any players trying to check you is crucial. If your shot is blocked, and the other player gets to the puck first, he has a good chance at a clean breakaway. I speak from experience on this one. It sucks.

Take a look before you shoot.
If there’s too much traffic, look for an open man to pass to, or simply dump it back in down the boards.

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