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Frustrated goalie

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Old
11-10-2010, 03:35 AM
  #1
GoalieEd
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Frustrated goalie

I used to play at a beginner Ee level in the bay area about 10 years ago and did ok in games and such. Anyways, I moved for work, started a family and hockey got put on a shelf until this summer. I'm now 36 and this summer started playing again (in net) play in Oklahoma and Texas pick up. Obviously it is a much smaller hockey community and most of the pickup players played elsewhere growing up. I'm getting lit up in pickup like an xmas tree, compared to the other drop in goalies, and am trying to figure out if I'm just washed up and unable to play at this point or will I eventually adjust to the higher skill level.

Anyone in a similar position in the past with any encouragement or advice? And for skaters, does the fact you've got a bad goalie in pickup hurt your enjoyment of pickup? We swish sides or rotate to try to even things out for the pickup teams.

I also don't know the butterfly style so I play a standup/flop style and am always getting beat on a deke or picked on the low corner and five hole while moving. My
mechanics are doubtlessly a mess but the only beginners class seems to be for children.

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11-10-2010, 07:04 AM
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Gino 14
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Always remember that in pickup, a goalie is always better than an open net and the guys appreciate having someone there. The best thing you can do is go to a beginners class and volunteer as a goalie for them. You'll see hundreds of shots and it will give you ice time as well as sharpen your skills. Also, it's still a game so you might as well enjoy it or not do it.

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11-10-2010, 08:14 AM
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ju87
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If the players are ragging on you for not performing well in pickup, well, then they are a bunch of d1cks.

Speaking for myself only, I totally appreciate the goalies who make the effort lug their gear all the way out of the rink for pickup just so us skaters can have someone to shoot on instead of a cones and an open net... makes it more fun for everyone if each net has a goalie

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11-10-2010, 09:07 AM
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FootKnight
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoalieEd View Post
And for skaters, does the fact you've got a bad goalie in pickup hurt your enjoyment of pickup?
Not at all. I'd much rather have a bad goalie than shoot at or defend the top of the net or a shooter tutor. I wouldn't worry about this, I think everyone appreciates that you are there at all, regardless of your current skill level.

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11-10-2010, 01:10 PM
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SouthpawTRK
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I wouldn't be so hard on yourself in regards you getting scored on in your pick up games. Since there seems to be a big range of skill levels in your area, it seems inevitable you will have to face some higher level players that will dangle you from time to time.

I'm stoked to have any level of goalie in the net when playing; I have a ton of respect for those that play goalie. It doesn't affect my enjoyment of the game if the goalie is getting scored on. I mean there are 5 other players on the ice that could have prevented the puck from getting to the net. I think that the pressures that some goalies put on themselves is too much. The forwards need to back check and the d have to hold their blue line and challenge.

While the beginner classes may seem too elementary, if they can show you new techniques (like the butterfly) then I would say it would be worth it; it certainly would not hurt.

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Old
11-10-2010, 02:02 PM
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Hey Ed -
I feel your pain - after 37 years off the ice I decided to play goalie again at age 51. I, too, am getting lit up "like a Christmas tree", to use your words. Is it fun? No, not always, as I'm sure you and I share the same competitive spirit in that, as goalies, we'd like to believe we're going to stop every shot that comes our way, however unrealistic we both know that is. I have to remind myself occasionally that I am not the only player on the ice; that is, there are 3 forwards and 2 defenseman that have to do their jobs, as well as me doing my job, for the team to be successful. If there is a breakdown with the skaters failing to do their part, more often than not, I am finding myself put in a position where I will fail also, i.e., facing odd-man rushes where I make the first save, but give up a rebound and then am out of position leading to an easy "open net" score. This is especially true when the defenseman has either been beaten down the ice, or is not in a position to clear the rebound. I guess the point I'm trying to make is that you have to remember the skill level of the players surrounding you, and your own skill level as well. Remember, the pro scouts aren't going to be looking at us waving that 2-way contract... The bottom line is to go out and have fun and try to do the best that you can do - who cares if our GAA looks like the GNP of a small country! You and I are out there playing a game that we both obviously enjoy, although I sometimes wonder if it wouldn't be more enjoyable if my save percentage didn't look like a decent MLB batting average...
Again, have fun, do what you can, and punt the rest... the last time I looked, no one was paying me to play. And when you make that one incredible save to steal an otherwise sure goal, it'll give you the reason you need to come back next week and strap the pads on again!
Good luck -
Stormy

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Old
11-12-2010, 01:54 AM
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GoalieEd
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Thanks for all the encouragement. I'm feeling better about it, now if I can just get over an injury I sustained in my last session I'll be good to get back out there.

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11-12-2010, 02:19 AM
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ponder
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a) Don't worry, goalies are always appreciated in pickup regardless of how many pucks you stop! Players love shooting on goalies and hate shooting on empty nets, that is a fact.

b) There's a reason why you don't see standup goalies at any competitive level anymore, the butterfly style is simply better. If you feel like practicing and improving, switch over to playing butterfly

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11-12-2010, 02:21 AM
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Giroux tha Damaja
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoalieEd View Post
Thanks for all the encouragement. I'm feeling better about it, now if I can just get over an injury I sustained in my last session I'll be good to get back out there.
If I were you, and really serious about improving, I would look into learning some of the basic mechanics of the butterfly style, and then see about going to stick time......not necessarily open hockey, but just stick and puck.

Then I would spend the whole time doing some skating drills at a slow pace until you felt that you got the techniques reasonably close to perfected, then speed them up. These drills could focus on anything from recovery out of the butterfly position, maintaining a good stance that will allow you to drop into the butterfly quickly, and just skating around the crease in general, maybe some butterfly slides. No need to even take a single shot, just skating and acclimating to the movements of the b-fly style.

Coaches say all the time that the game begins with good skating, and IMO, good goal tending is no different. Once you are able to move around in a good stance comfortably, and have practiced butterfly techniques, using them on the fly in the game will be far easier. From there it is just a matter of experience using it in games.


Good luck and don't forget to enjoy it.


Last edited by Giroux tha Damaja: 11-12-2010 at 02:26 AM.
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11-12-2010, 04:29 PM
  #10
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I found when I took a few years off from goaltending that when I returned I got lit up as well. My problem was that I was staying way too deep in the net so when I got more aggressive I had a lot more success. Just try to work on your positioning and angles and try not to swim too much around the net because thats when you run into problems. It will take some time to get back to form but if you keep working at it I'm sure you will get it back, good luck

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Old
11-12-2010, 04:43 PM
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SJGoalie32
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1) The long layoff doesn't help. A large portion of goaltending involves being able to read and anticipate the play. Hard to read and anticipate when you're out of rhythm and don't know what to expect.

Whenever I have a layoff of more than a month, it usually takes me at least 2-3 games to get my rhythm back. My longest layoff was about a year (due to injury and moving). Took me about 3 months to find my groove again.

2) There is a tremendous difference between the style of play in house leagues and pickup. Rec league teams play defense. Rec league teams backcheck. Rec league teams cover open opponents.

3) Rec leagues also tend to contain players of the same relative skill level. Sure, there are always a few guys who could/should be higher or lower, but it generally evens out. If you played EE back in the Bay Area, most of your competition was EE, too. Some guys probably could play for D teams, maybe even one or two at C level. But even those super studs still had to work with EE level linemates and worse. And the opposing goalie was EE caliber, too.

In pickup, the average skill set of the people who show up is usually much higher than EE. You might be a beginner.....the guys scoring on you are not. The goalie across the rink you're comparing yourself to isn't probably isn't a beginner either.

In pickup, you might be facing an entire forward line of B-level players, with no defense to support you. The downside is that you are going to get lit up. The upside is that the only way you improve as a goalie is through repetition and practice facing better players. In time, you will adapt.....and when you do that will mean you are a better and improved player.

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Old
11-13-2010, 09:07 AM
  #12
dannythekid
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoalieEd View Post
And for skaters, does the fact you've got a bad goalie in pickup hurt your enjoyment of pickup?
Not one bit. And also as mentioned anyone who wants to cut up is just mean. The biggest part is getting out on the ice, and there should be nothing but encouragement to help someone get better. It's all about getting people to play the game, forget how good or bad they are.

Just get out and keep playing, you're not gonna be able to play like a 17 year old kid, but you'll get back into it.

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Old
11-14-2010, 01:52 PM
  #13
Headcoach
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoalieEd View Post
I'm getting lit up in pickup like an xmas tree, compared to the other drop in goalies, and am trying to figure out if I'm just washed up and unable to play at this point or will I eventually adjust to the higher skill level.
One of the guys said on this post that it takes a couple of games to get back into it. Which is exactly the case. So, ask the hockey director at your rink if he is going to have a goalie clinic or an adult Learn to Play program. If he only has a kids program, asking him if you can join or ask him if you can come and help out the younger kids with their shooting. Odds are good that it will not cost you a thing except for your time and learning how to get back into it.

Quote:
Anyone in a similar position in the past with any encouragement or advice?
1.) Getting lit up will reduce by working on your angles. This cuts down at least half of the goals that are going by you.

2.) Learn the butterfly and learn where the "Go Down" zone is.

3.) Don't just learn the Butterfly. You will need to have as many saving techniques within your arsenal. If you do just one save, they will quickly know that you can only do that and then wait for it. So learn all of the saves. Send me a PM and I will send you a list.

4.) JMcleaf made a great point..."Don't stand so deep in the net" Come out to challange the shooter. Sometimes this will force him to make mistakes. Send me a PM and I will send you some stuff on Break-a-way positioning.

5.) Know how to find the puck when there's about 500 guys standing in front of you.

Quote:
I play a standup/flop style and am always getting beat on a deke or picked on the low corner and five hole while moving.
Well, this is why I mentioned knowing where the "go down" zone is. There are times when you don't need to go down and there are time when you better go down or your toast.

Nowever, let me say this to you. First, never trust your defense to do your job for you....controlling rebounds. 99 % if the time they will stand there and watch you and wait to see what you are going to do, rather then clearing the puck into the corner.

Second, when if they do try and help, sometimes they get turned around and will clear the puck into the net. So, always keep this in the back of your mind. There are time when your own team scores on you.

One of the other guys on this thread said....skating! How true this is. 80% of hockey is skating and 80% of skating is balance. Out of all the players on your team, you must have the most perfect balance. Oh, other players can lose their balance with out consegquences...however, you can not. Does a brick wall fall? Not if it has proper support.

Last thing...go watch other goalies all the time. Learn from their mistakes...not yours. If they do something that causes the team to head off the rink with a lose, then don't do what they did.

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