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Old
09-17-2009, 01:20 AM
  #1
BoJackson
 
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noob Question

So, last year was my first year back since being a kid as a full hockey fan. I knew all the rules and some of the subtleties, but obviously learned a lot watching 86 games in depth and really following everything off the ice.

But now...The one question I have is...why is everyone concerned about having a right-handed shot? I definitely understand the need of a canon on the blue line, but every time I've seen someone mention getting a new defenseman...they always stipulate it has to be right handed. Is that actually a deal breaker or just to mix it up with our glut of lefties?

So, probably a stupid question, and feel free to merge it wherever it may fit, but it's been bugging me lately and I wasn't really sure where else to ask.

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09-17-2009, 01:29 AM
  #2
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Originally Posted by BoJackson View Post
So, last year was my first year back since being a kid as a full hockey fan. I knew all the rules and some of the subtleties, but obviously learned a lot watching 86 games in depth and really following everything off the ice.

But now...The one question I have is...why is everyone concerned about having a right-handed shot? I definitely understand the need of a canon on the blue line, but every time I've seen someone mention getting a new defenseman...they always stipulate it has to be right handed. Is that actually a deal breaker or just to mix it up with our glut of lefties?

So, probably a stupid question, and feel free to merge it wherever it may fit, but it's been bugging me lately and I wasn't really sure where else to ask.
One thing is simple positioning. When you're skating to the blue line as a center, the guy to your left can put his back to the wall if he's a right-handed shot, and vice versa. Which means if you get the PP set up, you can have a right-handed shot on the left point and a left-handed shot on the right point.

Because we have a ton of lefties, we have to put a guy on the left point who is a lefty, and his body positioning isn't exactly ideal. He has to turn to fire shots and what not, as opposed to the righty who already is in position and can easily one-time the pass on goal.

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09-17-2009, 01:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoJackson View Post
So, last year was my first year back since being a kid as a full hockey fan. I knew all the rules and some of the subtleties, but obviously learned a lot watching 86 games in depth and really following everything off the ice.

But now...The one question I have is...why is everyone concerned about having a right-handed shot? I definitely understand the need of a canon on the blue line, but every time I've seen someone mention getting a new defenseman...they always stipulate it has to be right handed. Is that actually a deal breaker or just to mix it up with our glut of lefties?

So, probably a stupid question, and feel free to merge it wherever it may fit, but it's been bugging me lately and I wasn't really sure where else to ask.
Is it knob or noob? To be honest the hand on a PP is significant, it's not much different than ones writing hand. That said, in hockey most guys can go either way in the same way they must use their skates to stop either way. To excel in hockey both sides should be as equal as possible so in the end it should not be a game breaker.

I have played some ice hockey so I know the the significance of having both sides work equally ...


Last edited by Robert: 09-17-2009 at 01:42 AM.
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09-17-2009, 02:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoJackson View Post
So, last year was my first year back since being a kid as a full hockey fan. I knew all the rules and some of the subtleties, but obviously learned a lot watching 86 games in depth and really following everything off the ice.

But now...The one question I have is...why is everyone concerned about having a right-handed shot? I definitely understand the need of a canon on the blue line, but every time I've seen someone mention getting a new defenseman...they always stipulate it has to be right handed. Is that actually a deal breaker or just to mix it up with our glut of lefties?

So, probably a stupid question, and feel free to merge it wherever it may fit, but it's been bugging me lately and I wasn't really sure where else to ask.
As far as power plays go, there are two reasons.

1) When teams are in the offensive zone (on the PP or even-strength), they usually put a right-shooting d-man on the right point and a left-shooting on the left point. That way, if there are any clearing attempts up the boards, it's easier to knock the puck down, stop the puck, draw the puck towards the center, etc.

2) As alluded to in a previous post, many teams with a right-handed and a left-handed point man will swap positions during the flow of play to set up one-timer opportunities. (Only on the power play and if the team has settled possession of the puck in the offensive zone.) This way, one-timers (the best way to catch a goalie off his angle) are much easier, because you're not shooting across your body. But a picture is worth a thousand words. Take at a look at the first two Ovechkin goals in this video. Both are one-timers from the left side of the ice from a right-handed shot (Ovechkin's a righty). Now try to imagine how hard it would be to shoot that quickly if Ovechkin had to wait for the puck to go all the way across his body. Not only is it incredibly awkward from a physical standpoint (the best you can do in most cases is shovel the puck towards the net), but it's much tougher in terms of hand-eye coordination because the puck isn't coming right between your legs in the so-called wheelhouse.

The vast majority of Canadians shoot left. I think a greater percentage of Americans shoot right due to the influence of baseball and golf. For whatever reason, it seems that a majority of Russians shoot right.

Hope this helps.

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09-17-2009, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by hockeyguy2007 View Post
As far as power plays go, there are two reasons.

1) When teams are in the offensive zone (on the PP or even-strength), they usually put a right-shooting d-man on the right point and a left-shooting on the left point. That way, if there are any clearing attempts up the boards, it's easier to knock the puck down, stop the puck, draw the puck towards the center, etc.

2) As alluded to in a previous post, many teams with a right-handed and a left-handed point man will swap positions during the flow of play to set up one-timer opportunities. (Only on the power play and if the team has settled possession of the puck in the offensive zone.) This way, one-timers (the best way to catch a goalie off his angle) are much easier, because you're not shooting across your body. But a picture is worth a thousand words. Take at a look at the first two Ovechkin goals in this video. Both are one-timers from the left side of the ice from a right-handed shot (Ovechkin's a righty). Now try to imagine how hard it would be to shoot that quickly if Ovechkin had to wait for the puck to go all the way across his body. Not only is it incredibly awkward from a physical standpoint (the best you can do in most cases is shovel the puck towards the net), but it's much tougher in terms of hand-eye coordination because the puck isn't coming right between your legs in the so-called wheelhouse.

The vast majority of Canadians shoot left. I think a greater percentage of Americans shoot right due to the influence of baseball and golf. For whatever reason, it seems that a majority of Russians shoot right.

Hope this helps.
Typically you get more power from your shot if your strong arm is top hand of your stick. Common mistake most parents make when they buy their kids sticks is to get them a right hand stick because they are right handed. Most of the time when I am teaching developmental age kids (3-5 yr olds) I make sure to have quite a few uncurved sticks laying around. Most parents will listen when I tell them to wait and see what is comfortable. Overwhelming trend is shooting opposite of what you write.

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09-17-2009, 09:04 AM
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It is a good question.

A very noted former NHL player who was part of some of the best pp units in the game once told me: "It is the speed of the pass that scores the goal."

If you have the proper handedness (which creates the proper angles) you can move the puck quickly. Shifting the puck from your backhand to your forehand takes a split second, but sometimes a split second is all you have and the chance is gone.

Ideally you would like to two of the same and one different down low (ie. two righties and a lefty or two lefties and a righty) and then a right shot at the right point and a left shot at the left point.

If you are that way at the top with your dmen they are in their natural position and can easily use the width of the ice. It is also easier to make forehand to forehand passes across the blue line, then having one guy having to make a backhand pass across it. It also helps them take it off the wall off their forehand.

You see the players switch on the ice during play (the righty goes to the left side and vise versa) when they are facing a pk unit that isn't very aggressive at the top and they go into one-timer mode. In doing that they now can pass it straight to the guys' stick instead of across his body.

Down low, you want 2 of the same and one different so as to optimize the angles to enhance the speed of the passing and allow for the one timer.

The jackets, for example with all of their left handed shots, always needed to shift their body position in order to get the puck on their forehand.

Picture RJ at the net with his butt in Osgood's face and Nash with the puck on his LH stick on the goal line. If RJ gets the puck quickly, it is on RJ's backhand and if he wants to go forehand, he has to shift which, by the time you do that, the checkers are on you. If RJ was a right shot, the puck is on his forehand and all he has to do is sweep it into the net.

Having a right handed player not only at the top, but down low helps teams a great deal. Here is an example of a nearly ideal setup on the pp: Timonen at the top (LH), Richards at the top (LH), Prospal (LH) on the half wall switching with Briere (RH) and Knuble in the slot (LH).



Although it isn't the scenerio that I described above, if you stop it at the 1:34 mark, it shows two guys: Briere and Richards at the net, both on their forehand ready to pop in the rebound, which is exactly what Briere did. If Briere is a LH shot there, perhaps he doesn't get that puck cleanly on his backhand or a checker gets to him by the time he shifts and/or transfers it to his forehand.

I believe their second unit (pre Lupul trade) had a similar ideal setup down low. It is not surprising that they had one of the best pp's in the league. Having a quality ppqb like Timonen, and guys who have actually played on the pp in their career doesn't hurt either.


Last edited by hashmarks: 09-17-2009 at 07:27 PM.
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09-17-2009, 09:29 AM
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If you have the proper handedness...
We all want the hand. Hand is tough to get. You gotta get the hand right from the opening.


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09-17-2009, 12:33 PM
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We all want the hand. Hand is tough to get. You gotta get the hand right from the opening.


But if you switch hands it's like there is someone else there...

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09-17-2009, 09:59 PM
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An NHL player once told me, if you want to score on the PP don't take a second to think, just shoot before the defender can block your lane.

Right hand or left hand is not the key, quickness is the key in the NHL.

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09-17-2009, 10:52 PM
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An NHL player once told me, if you want to score on the PP don't take a second to think, just shoot before the defender can block your lane.

Right hand or left hand is not the key, quickness is the key in the NHL.
Per your last sentence, after the comma is correct. Does it really matter left of right hand? For a first or second liner, no not really, if you're good enough someone will take you, handedness be damned. But as you said, quickness is key, and part of quickness is being in the right position, and getting the puck in the right position, with the right angles, the handedness does play a factor in your ability to be quick. Like has been said earlier in this thread, going from backhand to forehand to get the right angle, while it may take a split second, does have an affect.

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09-17-2009, 10:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iron Mike View Post
Per your last sentence, after the comma is correct. Does it really matter left of right hand? For a first or second liner, no not really, if you're good enough someone will take you, handedness be damned. But as you said, quickness is key, and part of quickness is being in the right position, and getting the puck in the right position, with the right angles, the handedness does play a factor in your ability to be quick. Like has been said earlier in this thread, going from backhand to forehand to get the right angle, while it may take a split second, does have an affect.
Spacek is the standard... I love that dudes game.

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09-17-2009, 11:00 PM
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Spacek is the standard... I love that dudes game.
Spacek is a good player, but the standard he is not. That would be Lidstrom.

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09-17-2009, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
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Spacek is a good player, but the standard he is not. That would be Lidstrom.
So true Mike, but I have trouble with anything Detroit.

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09-17-2009, 11:19 PM
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So true Mike, but I have trouble with anything Detroit.
Ah yes, the Detroit factor. I hate Detroit as much as any true Jackets fan, but I love watching Lidstrom play, he's so positionally sound and rarely makes mistakes, while still being offensively superb.

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09-17-2009, 11:49 PM
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I'm jealous of you guys who had NHL players share such pearls of wisdom with you. The closest I've come is Dan Fritsche making fun of me.

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