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patience with the puck

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Old
08-03-2011, 02:10 PM
  #26
Jarick
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Bank passes are sweet. Very under-utilized at my level. Also, flip passes...our best D-man this summer will flip the puck out of the zone as a forward breaks so we get a scoring chance and extended possession time in their end.

I've struggled since moving up a level (well two actually) at seeing my teammates and getting them the puck rather than being stripped of it, and one thing that helped was moving from wing to center and hanging back a bit. This let me see some more of the ice and it felt like it slowed down a bit.

Still got a ways to go though...every time I get the puck in the O zone someone's on me before I can shoot or pass, so it's tough.

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08-03-2011, 03:30 PM
  #27
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Communication with teammates helps a lot. When you retreive the puck with little to no pressure, if there's a teammate nearby he should yell "TIME" at you. If they aren't doing that, ask them to start. When you know you have time to pick up the puck, take a look and make a smart decision, you won't rush to get rid of it so quickly, which almost always leads to turnovers.

If there's someone on your ass, your teammates should be telling you about that too by yelling "one on" or something like that.

Once you get used to slowing things down using verbal cues, you'll pick up on when you have time and when you don't.

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08-03-2011, 05:21 PM
  #28
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Great tip about communication. Things are alot slower away from the puck and it's easier to assess the situation without being the focus of everyone on the ice. So if you can let the puck retriever/carrier the situation then that makes their life so much easier.

Coming back for a puck if the goalie yells "man on" or "time" then that's big for knowing what to expect as a next step after getting to the puck.

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08-04-2011, 11:37 AM
  #29
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Originally Posted by j cal View Post
Great advice here, thanks everyone.

I don't want to skate at 80% either BUT I believe if I'm trying to drill it into the zone and there isn't anyone with me, it would be pretty tough for me to make a good play (unless I had excellent puck control). But even if so, that's not exactly what I'm trying to accomplish here.

Where I skate, there are a lot of guys that will backcheck real well, but then go in for a pokecheck/lunge forward trying to make a defensive play. If I had the right awareness, I should be able to make one move and blast right past him in that instance.

I also find myself going way too fast where I'm just making it easier for the d-men because I skate mostly north-south without maneuvering east-west.

I won't even bring up my lack of positioning skills in both zones...
Where do you skate? I mean do you play in a league where wins and losses are tracked or is it strictly pickup? If it's just pickup, make the most of each time you touch the puck and try to make it last -- 2 seconds, 5 seconds, 10 seconds without passing or having it stripped from you. The more confident you become in handling it and protecting it the less pressured you'll feel to get rid of it and make the bad pass. And if you do turn the puck over it doesn't really matter because it's only pickup.

Honestly, I'm in a similar situation. I'm not a fast skater but I'm even slower with the puck on my stick. I'm pretty agile but my puck handling skills don't match up with my skating so that's not really an asset either. I always *think* (because I look down at the puck too often) that somebody is just about to pick my pocket so I try to get rid of the puck as quickly as possible. That's a whole lot of problem areas for me to fix but at least it's a starting place. Anyway, here's my course of action in order of importance:

1. Play more pickup hockey and don't worry so much about making mistakes. As long as I believe that the worst thing I can do is turn the puck over I'll never try to hold and protect the puck. If I'm going to learn I have to allow myself to cough up the puck now and again and not take it so hard. I also play in a men's league so in league games I'll look for the safe play and take fewer chances. The aim is to make myself a better player through practice so that what's risky now becomes second nature to me in game situations.

2. Learn to protect the puck. To me this is far more important than learning to skate more quickly with the puck. For as long as the puck is on my stick I control the game, no matter how slowly I skate. What good is it if I skate the puck up the ice quickly, only to turn it over and have to backcheck?

3. Make smart decisions with the puck. The whole purpose of learning to protect the puck is to gain time to make a smart play. Clearing the puck out of my end is the bare minimum I should expect of myself. Starting a successful breakout, either by skating the puck out or passing up to a streaking winger can mean creating a scoring chance or at least giving my teammates a chance to change up. But this is a process -- I'm bound to make some bad decisions along with the good ones. It's important for me to be aware of what works, what doesn't and to adjust my strategies for the next time. Above all, don't be too afraid to screw up.

4. Lastly, do everything quicker. Speed is definitely an asset. But it's more important to build consistency in my play -- my decision making and my execution -- before I start trying to do everything quickly.

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08-04-2011, 02:01 PM
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EmptyNetter View Post
1. Play more pickup hockey and don't worry so much about making mistakes. As long as I believe that the worst thing I can do is turn the puck over I'll never try to hold and protect the puck. If I'm going to learn I have to allow myself to cough up the puck now and again and not take it so hard. I also play in a men's league so in league games I'll look for the safe play and take fewer chances. The aim is to make myself a better player through practice so that what's risky now becomes second nature to me in game situations.
This this and this. For us beginners this is where you have to start and what I came here to suggest. I generally have good instincts and at any sport love playing at a high speed, but being a relative newbie at hockey and finding myself playing in the upper divisions (plus wearing glasses don't help as it narrows my vision) the defenders can be on you so quick that you start to panic and toss the puck away as soon as you get it.

Particularly in the defensive zone, when you're covering the point the puck gets cleared to you and you gotta get it past the pinching defenseman, or in the offensive zone retrieving a loose puck in the corner. Yeah you need to keep your head up but being a relative beginner you'll probably need to have it down to at least retrieve the puck. At this point if you may not know if the dman is right on you or not and if he is then you only have a moment to make a play or he'll strip the puck from you.

So the natural instinct when you don't know where the other player's at is to quickly move the puck when you get it or you'll lose it. But you really gotta beat down and ignore that instinct, regardless of where the other guy may or not be just take a moment to collect the puck and get your head up. If he's right on you and you lose the puck, then oh well that's that. You're at least still in position to harass or try and tie them up, which is good practice anyways. Losing the puck this way is far safer than blindly throwing it up the ice and having them intercept it with room to spare. And if you do happen to have a little space then you can make a better play.

It all sounds obvious when you spell it out, but like I said in real time on the ice the natural instinct is to fear losing the puck so you panic and try to move it too quickly. Once you get over that then you can start working on the more advanced techniques others are suggesting.

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Old
08-06-2011, 07:33 PM
  #31
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Originally Posted by Noir View Post
Dude, that's generally a good thing.

Hockey is transitional game where mere seconds in a turn over could result in a game winning goal. The problem is you're just throwing the puck away or turning it over yourself.

Being fast is a good thing, and I'm not just talking about playing fast, it's also about thinking fast. The difference between me and the lesser experienced players in my beer league... is that before I even get possesion of the puck, I'm already tracking where my teammates are, where the opposing players are, and already making decisions.... ALL BEFORE I EVEN TOUCH THE PUCK.

The difference between smart hockey players and plugs.... are players who are thinking ALL THE TIME; not just on plays they are involved in. You have the right idea, u just gotta develop your hockey sense more and you'd be burning players with your passes/plays.



Hockey is the 1 game where it's not about slowing down. This sport at its best levels is just insanely fast; that if you check out for even a sec, be behind even 1 step, fall behind reading the developing play, or even overhandle the puck, can not just cost you the play, but even the game itself.

Boom, and there it is! It's what I do and it's always worked just fine for me. Knowing what your options are all the time makes everything so much easier. My game is 99% mistake-free because I survey what's going on all the time with my head up.

Hell, even when I am on the bench or watching a game on TV or live, I am always thinking about what I would do. Very rarely does something in a game catch me off-guard... unless it's a mistake, which I generally don't plan for. I honestly have never understood how people can find hockey a tough game to follow, since I usually can anticipate what's going to happen next.

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Old
08-08-2011, 01:54 PM
  #32
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I read this before that there are three variables in hockey.
-foot speed
-stick handling speed
-hockey sense
Your play is only as good as the weakest one of the aforementioned. So for example the OP said that skating/foot speed is his strength, then he is only as good as his stick handling and hockey sense which needs work.

I agree, you can be so much faster than teammates which can create you chances off the rush but if you can't delay enough with stickhandling or protecting the puck to give them time to catch up. At that point, you're pretty much in no man's land offensively if you can't do anything to counter the defense that is going to close in around you.

There is a time for a great counterattack and going all out speed against defense, and there is a time to delay and allow the play to develop.

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08-08-2011, 08:18 PM
  #33
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Originally Posted by Ozolinsh_27 View Post
I agree, you can be so much faster than teammates which can create you chances off the rush but if you can't delay enough with stickhandling or protecting the puck to give them time to catch up. At that point, you're pretty much in no man's land offensively if you can't do anything to counter the defense that is going to close in around you.

There is a time for a great counterattack and going all out speed against defense, and there is a time to delay and allow the play to develop.
No, no, no, no, no.

You should never be slowing down for your teammates. If you're that much faster than they are, it should be they who should be keeping up with you, not you dumbing down a facet of your game for them.

Like I mentioned earlier already, hockey is an insanely fast game and windows of opportunity closes in a matter of seconds. Trust me, even in the NHL level, players who over-handle the puck get themselves into more trouble than the chances they think they're creating. In hockey, know your play before you even make it. Don't dilly dally around.




Maybe what the OP means about players who are patient with the puck are players who actually make the correct plays, and make proper passes rather than players who just throw the puck around when playing flustered.

In that case, those players who make crisp, proper plays and passes aren't doing so because they're hanging onto the puck longer until they shake their check; they do it because they possess good composure under pressure.

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Old
08-09-2011, 03:16 AM
  #34
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Originally Posted by Noir View Post
No, no, no, no, no.

You should never be slowing down for your teammates. If you're that much faster than they are, it should be they who should be keeping up with you, not you dumbing down a facet of your game for them.

Like I mentioned earlier already, hockey is an insanely fast game and windows of opportunity closes in a matter of seconds. Trust me, even in the NHL level, players who over-handle the puck get themselves into more trouble than the chances they think they're creating. In hockey, know your play before you even make it. Don't dilly dally around.




Maybe what the OP means about players who are patient with the puck are players who actually make the correct plays, and make proper passes rather than players who just throw the puck around when playing flustered.

In that case, those players who make crisp, proper plays and passes aren't doing so because they're hanging onto the puck longer until they shake their check; they do it because they possess good composure under pressure.
Actually yes yes yes. Consider the context, we aren't talking the NHL here this is the Rink forum for those of us that play hockey. There will be a few guys here that play at a high enough level for that to matter but for the most of us it's probably low level beer leagues where you take what line mates you get.

I say that because this is the exact problem I always used to have. Just got reminded about when I played a second game for a bottom division team the other week and found myself in that position again. I'm a decent natural skater and started power skating classes before I started hockey, so when I joined my first beer league and being a winger this always happened. I'd get the puck and go flying up the wing along the boards, gain the zone and look over my shoulder to make a play and **** I'm all alone now what do I do. Not having the puck skills to actually get by the defenders I usually ended up just turning the puck over. I started getting the hang of delaying a little until the teammates could catch up, but then I moved and got into a higher division where keeping up was no longer a problem.

So yeah, if you're skating is well ahead of your teammates and you can't make a play, learn how and when to slow it down. I started to forget going to the net and just staying on the outside and skating around it instead, probably the easiest way.

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08-10-2011, 02:56 AM
  #35
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^

Uhhh, even beer league has back checkers. So unless you've got Datsyukian keep-away stickhandling skills, if you're opposing defensemen isn't going to take it away from you, your 1 or 2 backcheckers will; GUARANTEED.


Solution, make a play and make it fast. If you've got no other plays to make, the least you can do is just get a shot on goal. If you're team ever wants to amount something more than 1 shot opportunities, then they'll have to skate with you because the other team is not going to wait for them, or for you as you take your time.

The only time I see your way as feasable, is when you happen to come across teams that turtle into a defensive box and freely allow the offense to setup on their own zone; which I guess I have to concede isn't always unheard of, but as a player, you can't bank on that.

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08-10-2011, 07:29 AM
  #36
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Originally Posted by Noir View Post
^

Uhhh, even beer league has back checkers. So unless you've got Datsyukian keep-away stickhandling skills, if you're opposing defensemen isn't going to take it away from you, your 1 or 2 backcheckers will; GUARANTEED.


Solution, make a play and make it fast. If you've got no other plays to make, the least you can do is just get a shot on goal. If you're team ever wants to amount something more than 1 shot opportunities, then they'll have to skate with you because the other team is not going to wait for them, or for you as you take your time.

The only time I see your way as feasable, is when you happen to come across teams that turtle into a defensive box and freely allow the offense to setup on their own zone; which I guess I have to concede isn't always unheard of, but as a player, you can't bank on that.
If he's leaving his teammates behind, the only thing he's going to get are one-shot opportunities. He'll find himself outnumbered every time he's in the offensive zone. What good is that going to do him, or his team? It doesn't take much to give your linemates the chance to be back in the play. A little delay, and you have alternatives. It's certainly a better decision than taking a one and done shot on net because you've eliminated any other options. Because that's what you're doing to yourself if you're leaving your teammates behind. You're taking options away from yourself.

Speed kills, but teamwork will create more chances and score more goals than speed alone will. If your teammates can't keep up with you, then they can't keep up with you. They can't magically go faster than they are capable of. Pretending otherwise is just going to frustrate you and them.

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08-11-2011, 01:54 AM
  #37
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Yes keep in mind that my first experience in hockey (started a few years ago at the young age of 27) was on a beginners team in the bottom division, in a league with a great beginners intake program. Each team generally had a ringer or two but other than that most people were relatively new to hockey. While that's the low end of the extreme, I would say my suggestions still stand for a good way up through the middle ranks. And I'd think that most of the time if someone has to ask this sort of advice in a forum like this that they'd tend to fall into this category.

There's one set of advice to be given to teenagers hoping to go somewhere, and another to be given to adults who just play for fun and want to step their game up a little. I'm pointing this out because the topic is something I have problems with and am actively working on but many of the suggestions are simply way beyond me.

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08-11-2011, 02:05 AM
  #38
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If he's leaving his teammates behind, the only thing he's going to get are one-shot opportunities. He'll find himself outnumbered every time he's in the offensive zone. What good is that going to do him, or his team? It doesn't take much to give your linemates the chance to be back in the play. A little delay, and you have alternatives. It's certainly a better decision than taking a one and done shot on net because you've eliminated any other options. Because that's what you're doing to yourself if you're leaving your teammates behind. You're taking options away from yourself.

Speed kills, but teamwork will create more chances and score more goals than speed alone will. If your teammates can't keep up with you, then they can't keep up with you. They can't magically go faster than they are capable of. Pretending otherwise is just going to frustrate you and them.
1. One shot opportunities are better than no opportunities. The longer you delay, yes you may increase your options; or on the other hand decrease them. Bear in mind, the extra time you give your players to catch up, the extra time their defense gets to shut you down, or their backcheckers to strip the puck off you.

That's the other side of the argument that you're missing.


2. If you're ahead of your teammates, you're already 1 vs 5 (or whatever number happens to be already on defense & backchecking). Holding onto the puck just increases the time the puck carrier has to play keep away against that number of opponents; and therefore increase the chances of turn over.

Unless you're that advanced for your tier that you can play Datsyuk on the other team, I wouldn't give this particular advise to novices; which I assume this particular thread is targeted towards.

But if you are THAT good, and of advanced skill level, then yes... go for it. Play keep away as long as you can.


3. Dumbing down your strengths is a bad habit for a player trying to develop. If the OP slows it down, he's going to get shellshocked when he comes across a faster team; and soon he'll be finding that he'll have to resort to "said" speed to burn defenders, initiate break outs, cause opposing turn overs, take advantage of small in-game chances (breakaways, odd man rushes, etc.)



I'll tell you this, going back to the OP's query, the diagnosis isn't that he's too fast; it's that he has under developed hockey senses which many a members have already told him how to improve on. (He's already got the physical part of the game, he just now needs the mental part of it and put it together)


Last edited by Noir: 08-11-2011 at 02:13 AM.
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Old
08-12-2011, 05:13 AM
  #39
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Originally Posted by Noir View Post
^

Uhhh, even beer league has back checkers. So unless you've got Datsyukian keep-away stickhandling skills, if you're opposing defensemen isn't going to take it away from you, your 1 or 2 backcheckers will; GUARANTEED.


Solution, make a play and make it fast. If you've got no other plays to make, the least you can do is just get a shot on goal. If you're team ever wants to amount something more than 1 shot opportunities, then they'll have to skate with you because the other team is not going to wait for them, or for you as you take your time.

The only time I see your way as feasable, is when you happen to come across teams that turtle into a defensive box and freely allow the offense to setup on their own zone; which I guess I have to concede isn't always unheard of, but as a player, you can't bank on that.
Not really. It's pretty easy to slow the pace and allow your teammates to catch up to the play... Players do it in the NHL all the time, actually. I'd say a good 50% of rushes slow down to allow the trailer to get into the play. Wouldn't want to play hockey with you.

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08-12-2011, 04:17 PM
  #40
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Not really. It's pretty easy to slow the pace and allow your teammates to catch up to the play... Players do it in the NHL all the time, actually. I'd say a good 50% of rushes slow down to allow the trailer to get into the play. Wouldn't want to play hockey with you.
If you're whole team has to slow down for you... I don't know if any team would want to play with you.

Unless they need spot fillers to meet league fees, which luckily for you most beer leaguers require.




At the end of the day, skate as a team. Bust your ass to join the rush; and don't complain that your teammates don't pass to you because you're always behind on the play when the onus is on you to join; because the opposing defense is not going to wait for you.

That's why in MOST cases in hockey; player who don't skate... or choose to coast into offensive/defensive plays usually get *****ed at. (yes, even at beer league). That's the reality of the game.

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08-12-2011, 04:41 PM
  #41
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1. One shot opportunities are better than no opportunities. The longer you delay, yes you may increase your options; or on the other hand decrease them. Bear in mind, the extra time you give your players to catch up, the extra time their defense gets to shut you down, or their backcheckers to strip the puck off you.

That's the other side of the argument that you're missing.


2. If you're ahead of your teammates, you're already 1 vs 5 (or whatever number happens to be already on defense & backchecking). Holding onto the puck just increases the time the puck carrier has to play keep away against that number of opponents; and therefore increase the chances of turn over.

Unless you're that advanced for your tier that you can play Datsyuk on the other team, I wouldn't give this particular advise to novices; which I assume this particular thread is targeted towards.

But if you are THAT good, and of advanced skill level, then yes... go for it. Play keep away as long as you can.


3. Dumbing down your strengths is a bad habit for a player trying to develop. If the OP slows it down, he's going to get shellshocked when he comes across a faster team; and soon he'll be finding that he'll have to resort to "said" speed to burn defenders, initiate break outs, cause opposing turn overs, take advantage of small in-game chances (breakaways, odd man rushes, etc.)



I'll tell you this, going back to the OP's query, the diagnosis isn't that he's too fast; it's that he has under developed hockey senses which many a members have already told him how to improve on. (He's already got the physical part of the game, he just now needs the mental part of it and put it together)
1. No, it's not. That's the part you're not understanding. Waiting for your team to catch up doesn't mean stopping. It means delaying. Players do it in the NHL all the time, Noir, and that's as tough as the competition will ever get. You can't tell me that if it works in the NHL it won't work in other leagues. That's ridiculous. When I see a player like Teemu Selanne slow down to let his teammates catch up, and then I see Dan Sexton not do it, the results speak for themselves.

2. We're not talking about 10 seconds of delaying here. You seem to be overestimating the length of time we're talking about in your head. We're talking about one or two seconds here. And we're also not saying do it every time, even when it means you're putting yourself in a risky scenario. You're taking this to mean do it every time, when that's not what it means at all.

3. Delaying isn't dumbing down your strengths. It's using them intelligently. A person with a great slapshot shouldn't use that shot every time they get the puck, should they? There's a time and a place for it. A fast skater doesn't always need to be approaching mach 10. And if he's always leaving his teammates behind, and finding himself outnumbered in the offensive zone, then he's clearly not using it intelligently.

Yes, you're right. The best advice I read was to make sure to keep his head up and actively look around, and to plan ahead. If you know what you're going to do with the puck before it's on your stick, you'll be able to get it off quicker with control and composure when you need to. You won't feel the need to rush the play and panic.

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08-13-2011, 01:56 AM
  #42
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Originally Posted by Noir View Post
If you're whole team has to slow down for you... I don't know if any team would want to play with you.

Unless they need spot fillers to meet league fees, which luckily for you most beer leaguers require.




At the end of the day, skate as a team. Bust your ass to join the rush; and don't complain that your teammates don't pass to you because you're always behind on the play when the onus is on you to join; because the opposing defense is not going to wait for you.

That's why in MOST cases in hockey; player who don't skate... or choose to coast into offensive/defensive plays usually get *****ed at. (yes, even at beer league). That's the reality of the game.
Actually, I'm speaking as the guy that is almost always leading the rush, gaining the zone, and then setting up the offense. Nice assumption though. You obviously don't watch much hockey if you think players don't slow up and allow their team to catch up and get into the play, ESPECIALLY at the NHL level. It happens CONSTANTLY. Patrick Kane has made a living of doing just that in his first 4 seasons. I'd actually argue the exact opposite point of yours. Guys that DON'T know how to delay, wait for the trailer, and setup the offense, are the guys that don't have very good careers in the NHL. Pretty much every superstar in the NHL knows how to slow the play down and wait for his offense to catch up.

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08-13-2011, 03:25 AM
  #43
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Originally Posted by Pez68 View Post
Actually, I'm speaking as the guy that is almost always leading the rush, gaining the zone, and then setting up the offense. Nice assumption though. You obviously don't watch much hockey if you think players don't slow up and allow their team to catch up and get into the play, ESPECIALLY at the NHL level. It happens CONSTANTLY. Patrick Kane has made a living of doing just that in his first 4 seasons. I'd actually argue the exact opposite point of yours. Guys that DON'T know how to delay, wait for the trailer, and setup the offense, are the guys that don't have very good careers in the NHL. Pretty much every superstar in the NHL knows how to slow the play down and wait for his offense to catch up.
As with most things in hockey its all about timing.
If a player goes into the zone at half speed just so his teammates can keep up then
A. He/She is going to get annoyed at dumbing down his play for his team
B. He/She will find it harder to get past the D and get into a decent position
However if said player goes into the zone at full speed, gets past the D then when in a safe enough position holds up play for a couple of seconds to spot a pass to his teammates once they have got into position They will have a lot more success.
Unfortunately this is something my last team had a lot of problems with, they had a couple of very fast players who would zoom into the opposing zone, not realising that their teammates weren't in position to receive a pass and then went a made a weak shot into the goalies pads. They then started to get frustrated that they were "doing it on their own". It didn't occur to them to slow play down for a couple of seconds for the benefit of the team.

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