Passing Drills for Defensemen
Here's a great series of passing drills that will benefit all players, but in particular defensemen.
The back and forth passing practiced in the Quad Passing, and Cross Ice Passing drills are valuable skills when playing defense. D to D teamwork often involves a lot of lateral passing, compared to up ice passes sent up to the forwards on a breakout.
Always be sure your defense partner is clearly open when making a D-to-D pass. When in the offensive zone, an intercepted pass at the blue line can easily lead to a breakaway for the opposing team.
When controlling the puck in the neutral zone or in your own end, you can help your defnse partner out by hinging. Hinging is a type of defensive zone support where you drop back behind your defense partner when he has the puck. This will give him a safe passing option and help buy some time while your team regroups. Imagine a door or a gate opening up using the player with the puck as the hinge. Hinging can also act as a safety valve when the fore-check becomes too heavy.