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Neutral Zone Transition Options for Defensemen

Posted by Kevin - Filed under: Instructional Video
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Quickly chasing down a loose puck in the neutral zone and getting the play moving up ice creates a strong offensive threat. Often times defensemen are the first to recover loose pucks in neutral ice – this video covers three basic options for D to transition the puck up ice effectively.

Option 1 – D to D Pass :: Key Points

  • Protect the puck while passing
  • Weak-side d should be staggered back 1-2┬ástick lengths from the puck to create a better passing angle (see diagram below)
  • Don’t hesitate when making the pass – the longer you hold it, the more forecheckers will have time to pressure you
  • Communicate with your D partner
  • After passing to your partner, provide a support option for him/her
Defense Support Position for D to D Pass in Neutral Zone

Defense Support Position for D to D Pass in Neutral Zone

Option 2 – Open Up :: Key Points

  • This is an option to be used when you have a bit more time
  • Open up (pivot backward) and quickly scan the ice
  • Keep the puck close to the body, and initiate passes from close to your skates in order to generate maximum power

Option 3 – Cross-Body Pass :: Key Points

  • Protect the puck with your body
  • Look prior to passing and arriving at puck
  • Make a hard pass – you’ll have to attempt to pass extra hard to compensate for your body moving away from the pass
  • If you are on your backhand, use a turning motion back up ice to help propel the puck

1 Comment

October 20th, 2011 a31 12:49pm

[…] scoring opportunity, or finding the puck in the back of your own net. Last week we covered passing options for neutral zone regroups — in this week’s video, we’ll take a look at options for picking up a loose puck in […]

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