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Blocking Shots/Slumps/Off-wings

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Old
08-17-2009, 11:29 PM
  #1
FootKnight
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Blocking Shots/Slumps/Off-wings

Three subjects, but I don't create multiple threads.

Blocking shots:
Do you guys do it? I'm definitely the kind of player that will attempt to block any shot if I'm near the guy taking it and it's been biting me in the ass lately.

Yesterday I blocked a slap shot with the inside of my right foot and I'm currently ICEing it. It's nice and swollen and painful. Last week I took a slapper off the back of the leg and even have dropped to my knees facing a slap shot and taken it off the chest a couple times, without any trouble, but god damn this one hurts. Got a X-Ray today though and it doesn't look like there's any broken bones, luckily. Lately it seems like everything I try to block hits a relatively unpadded part of my body. I don't plan on stopping blocking shots, but I just wanted to complain about the pain I'm currently feeling. Can't wait to get out there and block some more, though.

ICE = Ice Compression Elevation

Slumps:
What do you guys do during slumps? I was scoring at like a 2 GPG pace for a while and now nothing seems to go in. I don't feel like I'm changing my game at all, but I'm obviously doing something different. I've been dropping back to D to cover guys not showing up, but even then the first game I dropped back I scored 2 goals, but now I'm back up at wing and nothing seems to be going in, which brings me to playing my off-wing.

Off-wings:
I've been playing left wing (I play left-handed) and have for a while, but it seems I play much better playing on the right. I score a lot more at least. During my slump I spoke about above, I've mainly moved between LW and D (when we are missing D-men). I don't think moving to D is the problem (2 goals, like I said above), but it just feels like I can't get anything where I want when I play LW. Cutting to the middle and firing a shot or dropping my shoulder and driving the net is so much easier when my stick is toward the middle of the ice.

What are you guys' opinions on playing off-wing?

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Old
08-18-2009, 12:12 AM
  #2
Gunnar Stahl 30
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i block shots all the time. i look to get in the way of them. i play goalie too though so its kind of an instinct to get in the way of it. i blocked probably 8 or 9 shots one game. i was a bit banged up but i love blocking shots

if im not playing center, i like playing lw(off wing im a rightie), i skate better going to my right which is unusual because im rightie but i can get shots of better and have the puck on my forehand when i cut to the middle of the ice and have a better angle for my shot, definitely what i like

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Old
08-18-2009, 12:29 AM
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I don't block shots. At least I should say, I don't block slapshots. Leave that to my goalie, he's well protected and can withstand those shots.

I need to be healthy and up on my feet for my day to day life. The last thing I need is to be missing work with a broken foot or something because I thought I was Zdeno Chara in my recreational league.

Off wing: I'm a right handed shooter, and I prefer the right wing. I just feel like I get to play on my forehand a lot more that way - receiving and giving passes and the like. Or at least its easier to do so. Also, while its easier to cut across and shoot with my stick towards the middle of the ice, I tend to find that with me, its easier for the goaltender as well. I don't know, I just feel like its a bit more of a difficult shot for the goalie, a tougher angle thats sort of coming across his body. I probably didn't explain that too well.


Last edited by clefty: 08-18-2009 at 12:35 AM.
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Old
08-18-2009, 02:00 AM
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cptjeff
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I block shots a good bit, but only from the front if I can help it. I have nice shins (Easton ST16), though I wear them short with tongues out, and have easton Synergy 800c skates, which if you're not familiar with them, has a one piece glass fiber composite shell. As in stiff as hell and will allow you to recover from the hardest direct slapshot in a few minutes. I don't do any more then go down on a knee to block a shot though.


Slumps, I just don't worry about scoring. I ply my game and wear down the d, open up chances for my teammates and try and make good passes and setup plays. Just kind of let the chances come to you.


Off wing. When I play wing, I prefer to play off wing. Better shooting angle, and a better position to work from when trying to make a move IMO, and I can catch a pass on my backhand.

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Old
08-18-2009, 03:12 AM
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I love blocking shots, I tell myself its a good pain

Slumps suck. Hockey is such a mental game, and if you don't feel confident in your abilities it will feel like the slump drags on and on. Take things slow, focus on making solid checks, play smart positionally, make smart passes and drive hard to the net, and shoot...LOTS. I started last season with 7 goals in 3 games, then only scored 2 for the rest of the year, so I know what it's like

As for playing off wing, I just can't do it. I always drag back to the left wing because its where I am most comfortable positionally.

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Old
08-18-2009, 07:00 AM
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Jarick
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Blocking shots - I try and use the front of my legs all the time. Put them together and let the shin pads do the work. I also have One90's which have a ton of protection. From the side or back it's gonna sting but from front I can't feel it.

Breaking slumps - you need to get your confidence back. Check out the book Hockey Tough, lots of good mental exercises. The best for me is to get loose in warmup, take some quick shots, and try and have a couple good shifts right off the bat.

Playing the off wing - this is my preferred forward position, as I'm a shooter and it puts the puck more in the middle of the ice. But since I moved back to defense this summer, I can't stand playing forward anymore. I get 1/2 as much ice time since the guys are never coming off and I never touch the puck since my guys can't break it out and never pass on 2-on-1's.

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08-18-2009, 07:31 AM
  #7
Canadiens1958
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How to Block Shots

Hockey 101 - Blocking shots. Head towards the boards, use your padded legs to block the shot.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMpC0qWKGlg

Trent McCleary tried blocking a shot with his head towards the middle of the ice, legs to the boards. Result fractured larnyx, near death experience, end of career.

Watch the full video and you will see very poor technique.

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Old
08-18-2009, 08:17 AM
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AIREAYE
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Blocking Shots: Looove it, but i dont get many opportunities to o it in my house league...no a lotta ppl can take slappers lol but from blocking several shots in my summer league, the boys named me captain for 2 games lol

Off Wing: I shoot left, but i play Left wing most of the time, i find that coming back to my own zone and stopping is easier as I'm a defensive forward...it's up to preference i think

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Old
08-18-2009, 08:20 AM
  #9
frito
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Blocked shots: I like to block shots. My most memorable was sliding feet first in the direction of my team's bench. I blocked the shot right off my face cage and it bounced to the neutral zone. My bench went nuts due to my insanity.

Slumps: I've never been good enough to go into a slump.

Off wing: I am pretty much a utility player. I play at whatever position seems to be short that night, LW, C, RW and D. The only thing I don't play is goalie. It doesn't really matter to me where I play. (Refer to answer on slumps)

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Old
08-18-2009, 08:46 AM
  #10
noobman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FootKnight View Post
Three subjects, but I don't create multiple threads.

Blocking shots:
Do you guys do it? I'm definitely the kind of player that will attempt to block any shot if I'm near the guy taking it and it's been biting me in the ass lately.

Yesterday I blocked a slap shot with the inside of my right foot and I'm currently ICEing it. It's nice and swollen and painful. Last week I took a slapper off the back of the leg and even have dropped to my knees facing a slap shot and taken it off the chest a couple times, without any trouble, but god damn this one hurts. Got a X-Ray today though and it doesn't look like there's any broken bones, luckily. Lately it seems like everything I try to block hits a relatively unpadded part of my body. I don't plan on stopping blocking shots, but I just wanted to complain about the pain I'm currently feeling. Can't wait to get out there and block some more, though.

ICE = Ice Compression Elevation
Blocking shots is sort of an instinctive reaction for me. I used to do it a lot when I was younger, but now that the guys I play with are bigger and stronger (with harder shots) I try not to do it as much. The best advice I can give is to make sure that all of your equipment is well fitting. If you DO still want to block shots, try not to do it with your back turned, and if at all possible lay down on the ice. This way you'll reduce the likelihood of getting hit in the skate (shin guards and good pants are better protected, plus you have your jock to save your jewels). Flamingo-ing doesn't help anyone.

Quote:
Slumps:
What do you guys do during slumps? I was scoring at like a 2 GPG pace for a while and now nothing seems to go in. I don't feel like I'm changing my game at all, but I'm obviously doing something different. I've been dropping back to D to cover guys not showing up, but even then the first game I dropped back I scored 2 goals, but now I'm back up at wing and nothing seems to be going in, which brings me to playing my off-wing.
Simplify your game. Don't do anything fancy if things aren't working... just go back to your strengths and play to them. For me, that means playing in the high in the offensive zone and being the first forward back into the defensive zone.

Quote:
Off-wings:
I've been playing left wing (I play left-handed) and have for a while, but it seems I play much better playing on the right. I score a lot more at least. During my slump I spoke about above, I've mainly moved between LW and D (when we are missing D-men). I don't think moving to D is the problem (2 goals, like I said above), but it just feels like I can't get anything where I want when I play LW. Cutting to the middle and firing a shot or dropping my shoulder and driving the net is so much easier when my stick is toward the middle of the ice.

What are you guys' opinions on playing off-wing?
Playing the off-wing was considered a "Russian hockey" thing for a very long time.

You get a better angle on your shot playing the off-wing, but you'll have to send/receive more passes on your backhand. I shoot left myself, and I almost always prefer to play RW... but that's just because it's my strong skating side, which makes it easier for me to cut into the middle of the ice.

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Old
08-18-2009, 09:13 AM
  #11
EmptyNetter
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As others have said if you're deciding to block shots do not expose your side or back to the shooter. All your best padding is in the front so that's where you want the puck to hit. Keep your legs together so you don't get hit on the inner thigh right where your pads end (pucks do have eyes!). If you're going to be narrow like that you'll be more effective the closer you are to the shooter so I suggest skating toward him as he winds up -- take time and space away and he may opt for a shorter windup. Hope your ankle feels better soon BTW.

I'll second Jarick's support for Hockey Tough, especially in your current situation. I also split time between left wing and defense and it can get confusing trying to remember what my role is. When I play wing I often come back too far in my own end trying to steal the puck rather than covering the point and waiting for the breakout pass. If you try to do too much of somebody else's job you won't have the energy to do your own very well and likely your offense will suffer. Show up before each game thinking, "If I'm on defense my three most important jobs are 1,2,3. If I'm playing wing. . . 1,2,3.

I don't have much to say about playing the off wing (RW for me). Taking my shot from the right/center of the ice is definitely to my advantage and playing along the boards is actually a good thing -- I've got a decent backhand and I can better shield the puck with my body against a forechecker. Taking passes from my left would take some adjustment but the biggest challenge would be just earning a spot on RW. On my summer league team our best scorers play on the right side and our weakest forwards are on the left side.

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Old
08-18-2009, 10:16 AM
  #12
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Blocking shots:
Used to do it all the time, but no so much anymore. The recovery time from a block just isn't the same in your mid 30s.

Slumps:
Honestly, I can't think of the last time I slumped. I'm usually a 1-2 PPG player in our league. Anything beyond that, like a 4 point night, I just consider it bonus.

Off-wing:
I constantly play LW as a right handed shot. I feel it gives a better shooting angle, especially if a right handed goalie is giving up his blocker.

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Old
08-18-2009, 11:59 AM
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Blocking shots: I do it anywhere from 20 - 60 times a game. It's my job. As a goalie, I'll say that I'm not a fan of players blocking shots. It usually takes the shooter's stick and/or puck out of my field of vision, which really messes up my ability to track the puck. Either you get the guy who stands upright between me and the player, screening me and letting the shot through... or you get the guy who flops on the ice too late, screening me and letting the shot through. Maybe it's just the teams I'm on, but only a handful of guys can block shots with any effectiveness.

So in general, I say let me take the shot. If you're looking for things to do, either try and force the man off the puck without screening me, or cover the open men so they can't get a quick one-timer on me or slap in a rebound.

Slumps: If I'm in a slump, I just play more drop-in hockey than usual. Each game I focus on one or two particular areas where I need improvement. I'll usually play better, which improves my confidence, which busts me out of the slump.

Off-wing: N/A.

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Old
08-18-2009, 12:14 PM
  #14
Ragss
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FootKnight kinda sounds like you need to work on your shot blocking technique. Inside of the foot, back of the leg, the chest...those sound like pretty hairy blocks to me. Unless something important is on the line I'd stick to only blocking shots when you can day down and get your shins in the way properly.

Gotta admit, though, for some reason I love laying down in front of a slap shot. Maybe its the rush, I dunno. I haven't had a ton of experience with blocking shots, but ironically the only injury I suffered from a puck was a pass (possibly a light wrister...not too sure) that hit the inside of my ankle. I wasn't even trying to block it. Ended up spraining it and I couldn't skate for like 2 months.

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Old
08-18-2009, 10:50 PM
  #15
FootKnight
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragss View Post
FootKnight kinda sounds like you need to work on your shot blocking technique. Inside of the foot, back of the leg, the chest...those sound like pretty hairy blocks to me. Unless something important is on the line I'd stick to only blocking shots when you can day down and get your shins in the way properly.
I don't think it's really a problem with technique. I block a fair amount of shots and generally take them off the shin pads, it just the last few have been awkward for some reason. I also don't lay down (or kneel) to block shots unless something's gone wrong or the goalie is out of position or something, I usually block standing feet together and just take it harmlessly of the shin pads, or the laces every once in a while.

As for screening the goalie on blocking a shot, I won't go for a block unless I'm close enough that I feel that the puck is either going to hit me, it'll go wide of he shoots around me, or there's like 3 guys in front already and the goalie can't see **** anyways. If I'm too far away from the shooter and there's no one putting up a screen I'll usually move out of the way so that the goalie can see it.

Thanks for the tips on breaking slumps. I've been keeping things pretty simple like taking a shot instead of an extra deke when I've got an opening, that sort of thing. I generally don't think about it on the ice while actually playing, I just concentrate on what's going on and my positioning and such. I'll look into the book, as well. The group I play with has 3 teams in 3 different divisions in our league (I play the bottom), but the middle team asked me to play for them this weekend because they were short. I played right and scored twice, so I guess it's not an complete slump, just on my normal team. I'm thinking about moving to right for a bit on my normal team to see how I do.

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Old
08-18-2009, 11:09 PM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Hockey 101 - Blocking shots. Head towards the boards, use your padded legs to block the shot.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMpC0qWKGlg

Trent McCleary tried blocking a shot with his head towards the middle of the ice, legs to the boards. Result fractured larnyx, near death experience, end of career.

Watch the full video and you will see very poor technique.
As long as you don't put your stick out in front of you, you won't need to look away, unless the puck is on edge, but even then the other player will probably settle it down and pass it.

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Old
08-18-2009, 11:10 PM
  #17
Ryan52
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yea i block shots, but dont go down to block shots much though

slumps suck, and luckily i never hit one that lasted more than 3 games last year. just think about how you think you should play (production, defencive play, etc.) and work your ass off

i play on my off wing (left handed, right wing). so much better

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