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Opinion on blocking shots with your body

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02-14-2012, 04:22 PM
  #1
dwreckm
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Opinion on blocking shots with your body

So I'm a new player to hockey, I have roughly 15-20 games experience, and was wondering what the general consensus is on blocking shots with your body. Specifically, when a player slides on their side to block the puck in front of the goal.

I ask because I see it done, both in lower tier games, like ECHL, but also in NHL games, and then on the other end, I hear negative comments about someone being a "diver." I haven't yet done it (I play D a lot in my novice league) because I'm not sure if it's something that's frowned upon.

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02-14-2012, 04:28 PM
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Gino 14
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Never heard of blocking shoys as frowned upon but you need to be careful so you don't injure yourself or another player if you decide to try sliding. Stick with using your shins and skates and you'll enjoy life a lot longer.

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02-14-2012, 04:35 PM
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1Knee1T
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwreckm View Post
So I'm a new player to hockey, I have roughly 15-20 games experience, and was wondering what the general consensus is on blocking shots with your body. Specifically, when a player slides on their side to block the puck in front of the goal.

I ask because I see it done, both in lower tier games, like ECHL, but also in NHL games, and then on the other end, I hear negative comments about someone being a "diver." I haven't yet done it (I play D a lot in my novice league) because I'm not sure if it's something that's frowned upon.
I think some guys may not like it because they don't want to injure anybody, especially in a house league, so they elect to not shoot when somebody is in the way like that. They probably see it as a cheap tactic to ruin a scoring opportunity. I find more people will shoot anyway so you should be careful if you're new to shot blocking.

Also, I think you may understand what a "diver" is. A diver is somebody who will intentionally fall down to draw a penalty, not somebody who dives in front of shots.

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02-14-2012, 04:44 PM
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noobman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwreckm View Post
So I'm a new player to hockey, I have roughly 15-20 games experience, and was wondering what the general consensus is on blocking shots with your body. Specifically, when a player slides on their side to block the puck in front of the goal.

I ask because I see it done, both in lower tier games, like ECHL, but also in NHL games, and then on the other end, I hear negative comments about someone being a "diver." I haven't yet done it (I play D a lot in my novice league) because I'm not sure if it's something that's frowned upon.


It seems you've mistaken "diving" with "diving". "Diver" in a bad connotation is usually used to describe someone who embellishes an injury. You might tap them on the shin pads with the stick and they'll dive on the ice to draw a penalty, making it look like you tripped them.

Diving in front of a shot to block it is okay, but if you're an adult playing rec league hockey then why bother? Some of those guys shoot really hard and you could seriously hurt yourself doing it. I used to block shots as a teenager but since I started playing as an adult with guys who can really wire it, I just leave that to the pros.

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02-14-2012, 04:50 PM
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dwreckm
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Thanks for clearing up the diver thing, I'm still not clear on all hockey terminology. I also appreciate the input.

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02-14-2012, 06:04 PM
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Stickmata
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Laying down to block a shot frowned upon?! Unless you're playing shinny or just flopping around out there all the time and taking people out, there is nothing wrong with blocking a shot that way. It's a competitive game. If you're willing to sacrifice your body, nobody's gonna be upset with you on either team. Someone getting pissed because you're breaking up a scoring chance? Please; cry me a river. That's exactly why you do it!

If you're gonna do it though, you need to learn to lead with your shin pads and make sure you're close enough to the shooter that he can't easily adjust his shot to get you in the chops. If not, you're probably gonna take shots in your chest/neck/face, which is not fun.

All that said, in a true novice league with beginners, you probably don't need to be going down to block shots.

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02-14-2012, 06:17 PM
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vapor11
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Although the pros do it all the time if you are just playing for fun/novice I would not recommend blocking shots

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02-14-2012, 06:35 PM
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AIREAYE
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Up to the player really. If someone is competitive enough and have that kind of 'reckless' or even selfless factor to them then why not? I love shot blocking, and when done well it really pumps the boys up.

However as Don Cherry stresses: when blocking shots, turn your head the other way/protect your neck.

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02-14-2012, 06:52 PM
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As a goalie, i'll put in my 2 cents on blocking shots.

Be committed.

With blocking shots imo, it's all or nothing. Either try and block the shot or if you don't want to get hit by the puck (that's completely understandable) clear the lane so the goaltender can see the shot.

Too often, I see guys that are near the play and try and cover the defenseman. When the defenseman raises his stick for the slap shot, they freeze about half way between the shooter and the goaltender. Then they start doing weird things like jump or turn their back to the shooter, try to block a puck in mid air with their stick, ect.

Firstly, by doing this you are creating the perfect screen for the opposition.

Secondly, you will most likely end up hurting yourself because you are not using the proper technique for blocking the shot or looking at the play.

Lastly, unless Mike Green or Shea Weber is shooting the puck, i'm going to guess that 99% of goaltenders can make a save on a point shot. As long as you are in a position to clear the rebounds, everything will be fine. Thus, no need to block it, just make sure the goaltender has a good view to make the first save.

I don't think it's necessary to block shots in house league or whatever. However, if you play in a somewhat competitive league you might have to make the odd sacrifice.

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02-14-2012, 07:14 PM
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BHDefensiveForward
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If you're going to block a shot always face the shot! You have no protection on your back, and little if anything on your side. Always keep your neck covered by tucking your head closer to your chest. I would strongly suggest you have a cage or full face protection if you intend on blocking at a distance, you should be as close to the shooter as possible.

I frown on body blocks, why not just put your stick in the way? Not work getting hurt in a beer league.

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02-14-2012, 07:35 PM
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Droid6
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Get as close to the shooter as you can when you block a shot. That way you have a better chance of actually blocking it and it will most likely hit you in the shin pads and not the neck. Laying down to block a shot in a rec league game is not smart as you have less vision and control when you're in the act of laying out and I've seen people get pretty jacked up doing it. My first rec league game I layed out and the shooter clearly had no shot but shot at me purposely anyways right in the cup and another guy I know layed out and he inadvertently rolled and took a shot to the back of the unprotected base of his skull. Get as close as possible, squeeze your shin pads shut, turn your hands into your body, and put your chin against your chest to protect your neck or get out of the way!

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02-14-2012, 07:42 PM
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ponder
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As noobman stated, the only kind of diving that is looked down up is embellishment used to draw calls, like this:


Blocking shots is generally admired, you're sacrificing your body for the good of the team. I used to block shots when I played HS hockey, but in beer league I never do, it can totally suck when you catch a slapper off the skate, neck, or other regions with minimal protection, it's just not worth the risk for beer league games. Your foot/ankle can be broken even on just moderately strong shots.

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02-14-2012, 07:44 PM
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AIREAYE
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BHDefensiveForward View Post
If you're going to block a shot always face the shot! You have no protection on your back, and little if anything on your side. Always keep your neck covered by tucking your head closer to your chest. I would strongly suggest you have a cage or full face protection if you intend on blocking at a distance, you should be as close to the shooter as possible.

I frown on body blocks, why not just put your stick in the way? Not work getting hurt in a beer league.
Deflections, my friend. I've heard many an NHL goalie complain about it on TV and have seen quite a few occurrences in games as well.

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02-14-2012, 07:49 PM
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pelts35.com
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AIREAYE View Post
Deflections, my friend. I've heard many an NHL goalie complain about it on TV and have seen quite a few occurrences in games as well.
They complain about it and rightfully so. Nothing worse than playing the shot perfectly only for my own dman to deflect it to result in a goal.

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02-14-2012, 07:49 PM
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Another example of the bad kind of diving. RIP Mike Ribeiro.

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02-14-2012, 08:07 PM
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02-14-2012, 10:09 PM
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On the topic of blocking shots. It's all up to you. As a new player no one would blame you for not wanting to get in front of a shot.

That being said, I love blocking shots, it's so satisfying. I have yet to lay down to block a shot, just pointless for a beer league. I play wing so I'm at the point making sure the Dman can't get a good shot off. When I see he has the puck I skate hard towards them to take away their angle. Right before he's about to shot I stop skating and bring my shins together so I don't give a perfect screen for them. Also keep the stick blade vertical on the ice off to the side of your skates so if the puck doesn't get much air you're stick will stop it.

If you get a good block in, it may bounce past the dman and you can have a breakaway with all the speed you've got always.

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02-14-2012, 11:58 PM
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If you're doing non-contact rec hockey, I say what's the point? Why sacrifice your body for a game that's probably meaningless. You're not getting paid for it. If you want to risk injury it's your call. But if you're playing high tiers than obviously you might want to shot block.

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02-15-2012, 09:01 AM
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ChiTownHawks
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I play rec hockey and only block with my shin pads. I am not laying out in rec league.

Also if I am close to my own goalie I do not touch any puck in the air with my stick. You are just asking to deflect that into your own net.

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02-15-2012, 09:06 AM
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pelts35.com
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiTownHawks View Post
I play rec hockey and only block with my shin pads. I am not laying out in rec league.

Also if I am close to my own goalie I do not touch any puck in the air with my stick. You are just asking to deflect that into your own net.
And your goalie thanks you.

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02-15-2012, 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by pelts35.com View Post
And your goalie thanks you.
Haha, normally all my goalie says to me is, "You're screening me!"

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02-15-2012, 10:35 AM
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Lonny Bohonos
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Make sure you have palms on your gloves. Lol

I learnt this the hard way when my finger exploded after getting hit with a slap shot while blocking a shot.

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02-15-2012, 11:44 AM
  #23
JoeCool16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aftcomet View Post
If you're doing non-contact rec hockey, I say what's the point? Why sacrifice your body for a game that's probably meaningless. You're not getting paid for it. If you want to risk injury it's your call. But if you're playing high tiers than obviously you might want to shot block.
The game's what you make of it, if you think it's meaningless then it's meaningless no matter what level you play at

That said, I personally wouldn't go down for a shot. To stop a pass on a 2 on 1 of course, but in front of a dman with a hard slapper? Heck no. Respect to the guy who does though, even if I would consider him pretty crazy.

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02-15-2012, 11:47 AM
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Hugh Madbrough
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blocking shots in men's league? your goalie has pads for a reason...

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02-15-2012, 11:59 AM
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Stickmata
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aftcomet View Post
If you're doing non-contact rec hockey, I say what's the point? Why sacrifice your body for a game that's probably meaningless.
Why play the game at all if it's meaningless to you?

BTW OP, I've gotten hurt way worse blocking shots standing up than I have going down to block them. If you go down right, you can pretty much catch it on your shin pads or, at worst, your pants. Standing up, the puck finds my skates way too much.

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