The Secret to Scoring More Goals

hockey netPhoto by Patrick Haney

What is the secret to scoring more goals? Take more shots!

As the Great One once remarked, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

Truer words were never spoken.

As a right-shooting right winger, I tend to fade to the right when carrying the puck across the blue line. I favor the outside shot, and I like using my body to shield a defender so they can’t poke the puck away. However, one bad habit I’ve picked up–as one of my linemates so graciously pointed out–I tend to coast when a defender approaches. I think the reason I do this is because I’m not coordinated enough to throw a deke if my feet are still moving. Lame, I know. The thing is, usually I can put a decent move on the guy guarding me, but slowing down allows too much time for backup to arrive. As you know, hockey is a fast paced sport and even a few seconds can result in a lost opportunity. When I have a defender shutting me down I can’t get a shot off.

No shot means no goal.

If you suffer from the same ailment I do, you might grab a friend and practice driving to the net. One thing I find that helps me is to focus my eyes on the goal, rather than on the approaching defender. Keeping my eyes focused and my legs churning means I’ll be harder to catch and more likely to get a good look at the net.

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  1. Josh Howard said on May 26, 2011

    So true. I remember this playoffs watching the RedWings/Coyotes series. It was late in one of the games and Danny Cleary had the puck deep in the zone at the goal line. No one came after him to check him so he sat there and waited for Bryz to move a bit between the pipes. Wouldn’t you know, the man made a wicked snipe between his leg and the goal post. It was an impossible shot, but one that sealed Pheonix’s fate simply because he took it. Keep those great articles rolling!

  2. Ben said on June 21, 2011

    I think there’s no better example of this in action than Bieksa’s goal in double OT against the Sharks. He just puts it on net. He doesn’t stop it, tee it up, and try for the perfect shot. He shoots it quickly and uses the element of surprise to score a big goal. With amazing goaltenders, you need to have everything possible on your side, so the element of surprise is definitely a good weapon to use!

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