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Top 3 Ways to Make SMARTER Decisions with the Puck | Hockey Sense

August 28, 2019

It’s coach Zac, head coach here at 247 Hockey, and in this video I’m going to talk about the top 3 ways that you can make smarter decisions with the puck. One: Know your options before you get the puck on your stick, okay? Take a quick look. A lot of times you have the opportunity to
scan the ice, to know the ice, to take a quick peek. If you’re going to pick up a loose puck,
before you get a pass, take a quick look and have your feet in the right position. So, don’t just be staring, looking backwards
at your net. Make sure you’re turning your feet towards
the ice, up ice, so that you can take a quick look and know what your options are before you
get the puck. You’re going to be able to read pressure
coming from the other team, you’re going to be able to see where your players are. So just a quick glance, and just using your
peripheral vision, it’s going to give you a better idea of what to do with that puck
and what your options are going to be before you get to it, and that’s going to allow
you to make a smarter decision. Two: Know your safety options. Know what that safe play is that you can make
because if you know that safe play then that’s going to be your default. So, whether it’s getting the puck deep, whether it’s using the boards, whether it’s wrapping the puck. Whatever that safe option, sometimes it might
even be a shot on net, so maybe you’re looking at that pass across, or that pass to the trailer,
and if that option’s not there, and the play collapses on you, make that safe play
quick, okay. So know what that safe option is in every
situation: in breakouts, in neutral zone regroups, in line rushes. As you’re attacking the offensive zone know
what the safe option is for that puck carrier at when you’re that puck carrier, so that way as you get
pressure, as that play collapses, you can have your head up, you can look to make that
play, and if things don’t develop the way you want, you have that safe option. What happens is a lot of players don’t know
that safety option. So what happens when the play collapses? What happens when the play, you know, collapses
on them and they don’t have options, and they don’t see the play they wanted is they
panic with the puck, and they just throw it, okay. And that’s a stupid decision. Or they try to stickhandle through the guy,
and they end up getting knocked off the puck, and turning it over. So, know what your safe option is in every
situation so if the play doesn’t develop the way you want, if you don’t see the option,
if you don’t have options, you make that safe option, you make it quick. You can make it without thinking because you’ve
already studied it and learned it, and then you’re going to make smarter decisions in
all situations, and it’s going to give you the confidence to look for other plays. It’s going to give you the confidence to
have more patience, cause you’re going to know that you have that safe option. Three: Handle the puck with your head up. You’ve got to build enough skills, and enough
confidence with that puck on your stick that you can handle it with your head up. You look at the top players in the NHL, you
look at the top players in their game, they can handle that puck with their head up. They don’t have to look down, they’re
not worried about losing it, and that’s going to allow them to have more confidence. If you’re not thinking about losing
the puck, and if you can make plays, and make moves, and stickhandle the puck in tight areas
without having to stare at it, you’re going to be having more confidence, you’re going
to be able to read the ice better, you’re going to be able to make smarter decisions. The problem is if you’re so worried about
losing that puck. If you’re so worried about catching passes that you have to look down, and you have to really focus and control that puck, you’re never going to be able
to make smart plays with that puck, because by the time you get your head up, and by the
time you can look, the play is going to collapse on you, the defenders are going to collapse
on you. You have to build elite level puck handling
skills without staring at that puck. And obviously, in tight areas, in certain
areas you’re going to have to look down, you’re going to have to glance down. But the less you can stare down at the puck,
the more you can read the ice, the more you that you can see the play. So work on handling the puck with your head
up. Work on it off the ice. Spend hours on that in different situations,
moving your feet forwards and backwards transitioning with one hand on your stick, using that toilet
paper roll with your bottom hand. Every single situation work on handling that
puck with your head up, so that you can learn how to be an elite-level stickhandler without having
to stare at that puck, and that’s going to allow you to read the ice, learn the play,
and you’re going to have a lot more confidence, and you’re going to be able to make a lot
better decisions. I put together a free 3-day stickhandling challenge,
alright. For three days we’re going to take you through intense off ice drills to help you build those skills that you need to make better
decisions, to have more confidence with the puck, to handle the puck with your head up. Go to There’ll be a link in the description of
this video, so go to the description of the video, the very top link. There’s also going to a link in the comments. I’ll pin the top comment with a link. It’s a three-day stickhandling challenge,
so over the course of three days, we’re going to work on your stickhandling, we’re
going to give you intense hockey-specific and position-specific drills, and we’re
going to work on those skills that a lot of player ignore because they don’t know how
to train them the right way, okay. So this is going to be different drills that
you are used to, and it’s going to push you out of your comfort zone. So, for three days we’re going to take through
a stickhandling boot camp to improve your skills and your stickhandling with the goal
of making better decisions and having more confidence with that puck. Hey, if you’re not subscribed to our YouTube
channel, get subscribed right now. Make sure you get notified for new videos,
turn on those subscribe notifications, and make sure you hit that SUBSCRIBE button right
now if you’re not subscribed to our YouTube channel yet. Leave me a comment below. Let me know what you think players need to
do to make smarter decisions with the puck. So, I want your opinion. Leave me a comment. Let me know what do you think players need
to do in a game to make smart decisions with that puck. It’s coach Zac, head coach here at 247 Hockey. signing off. Remember, elite hockey players aren’t born,
they are made. So go out there, train hard, and make yourself
into an elite hockey player.


  • Reply 247 Hockey July 4, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    Start your FREE stickhandling challenge here:

  • Reply NateSnipes July 4, 2017 at 3:23 pm

    You are making me better every video. Keep up the great work.

  • Reply Gerhard Symons July 4, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    Great advice. It takes hundreds, if not thousands, of hours to stick handle with head up.

  • Reply pingpongplaya07 July 4, 2017 at 7:48 pm

    If you're the head coach is there an assistant coach?

  • Reply MARNY July 5, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    Watching and learning a lot from your videos! Keep up the good work.

  • Reply Lundqvist July 5, 2017 at 9:20 pm

    Quality video!

  • Reply Josalynlily2004 July 5, 2017 at 10:18 pm

    I love your videos they help me so much helps me get an advantage over all the boys thanks keep them up

  • Reply offsaucin July 6, 2017 at 12:14 pm

    Fantastic advice! This really improves play making and decreases turnovers. Keep up the great videos!

  • Reply PJ August 28, 2017 at 6:29 am

    Put their head on a swivel

  • Reply PJ September 4, 2017 at 5:33 am

    Just flat out great information Zac.

  • Reply young depth989 October 14, 2017 at 2:54 pm

    Can u make a video for offensive defence man on how to move the puck and to make smarter decisions on the rush

  • Reply HockeyDad5 AHU January 30, 2019 at 4:02 am

    Really great information. My 10yr is getting a lot from your posts.

  • Reply Unknown Project July 31, 2019 at 7:53 pm

    love watching some bald dude give out hockey rules and training💯🔥❤️ keep it up Zack

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