DEFENSIVE PLAY

Both teams are trying to score goals. Prior to the start of a game both coaches will be telling their team to get in the offensive zone slot, rush the net, screen the goalie, shoot and go for the rebound. When playing offensive hockey which means having a chance to score a goal players will get excited, move fast, and think best how to score.

When playing defensive hockey it is not as exciting as scoring goals. It is more like work trying to get back possession of the puck. Who wants to chase someone? An effective Coach will have all players taking a lot of pride in their team’s ability to stop the other team from getting good shots on the net. A Coach should spend a lot of time in practice showing players how to defend the defensive zone properly. Also off ice chalk board time is required to explain responsibilities and answer questions.

When defensive play is presented properly and accepted as an integral part of hockey the team will put in the effort required. You will notice a few players who actually excel at defensive play. These are your natural penalty killers. They take pride in preventing goals and need the same compliments goal scorers get.