Published at Friday, April 13th, 2018 - 17:45:27 PM. Hockey Gear and Equipment. By Adrienne Christiane.
Checking is one of the most demanding skills in hockey and also one of the most overlooked by players coaches and fans. It is probably the least glamorous of all skills but one of the most important when it comes to defensive team play. Checking is a skill designed to aid in the recovery and possession of the puck. It should not be used to intimidate or injure an opponent.
HAND SKILLS With the advancement of the butterfly save in the early to mid-1990s goaltenders started perfecting their on-ice coverage and the use of their hands was a bit forgotten. Catching a puck means possession for your team and rebounds off your blocker are steered to the corner. In warmup do a simple drill of catching pucks and blocking shots to the corner. Drop 30 pucks in the slot and while in your butterfly have someone shoot at your hands. The Finnish goalies especially Kari Lehtonen in Dallas do this every day as part of their warmup.
Common perceptions specially among Twitter's most vocal fans are that the NHL's Department of Player Safety struggles with inconsistency that stars get preferential treatment that there is no rhyme or reason to the league's decision making. That couldn't be further from the truth however. During the 2014-15 season I visited the NHL DOPS war room and learned everything I could about how suspensions happen. I've spent the next couple years further brushing up on the subject and I've realized the war between the fans and the DOPS stems primarily from one problem: lack of education.
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