Check out the drills Evan Brownrigg shared during his Global Skills Showcase presentation, including Loose Puck and Pursuit Battles.
Are your players struggling with winning puck battles? Evan Brownrigg has you covered with his detailed look at how to dictate play by building great battle skills.
The Director of Player Development at Next Generation HKY explains that battle is a tactical skill with technical skill elements. Watch as he shares his skill building process for player development (isolation, patterning, sequencing and stress), which he applies to this key skill to owning the puck.
Loose Puck Battles and 50-50
- C1-Isolation-Race to the Gate: Whistle start. P1 and P2 battle to be the first one through the gate.
- C2-Sequencing-Pork Chop: P3 battles to get inside position on P4 and does a sequence of escapes with fakes and jab turns.
- C3- Patterning-D Retrievals: F6 chips puck deep for D5 retrieval and pressures D5 immediately.
- C4- Stress-Live 50-50: Coach chips puck deep for F7 to retrieve puck under full pressure from D8. D8 tries to escape to the net for a shot.
- Key to all of these 50-50 loose puck battles is to get inside body position on the defender to separate the checker from the puck then attack the good ice.
- Work faking and jab turns to both left and to the right.
- Accelerate to the net out of each quick turn, protecting the puck from the checker.
- Defenders start with token pressure then build to full pressure game situations.
- On D Retrieval, D should pivot quickly, then do a shoulder check before picking up the puck.
Small Area and Established Battle
- C1- Protect the Dot. Set up with a puck on the face off dot. Defending player sets up with inside position. On whistle, P2 tries to get to the puck as P1 blocks out his body and stick. Let play out 10-15 seconds then have players switch positions.
- C2- Bull Ride. Place puck slightly closer to P3 just inside the face off dot. On whistle P3 recovers the puck and blocks out P4 from getting the puck. P3 must maintain possession of the puck in the face off circle for 8 seconds.
- C3- Corner Walk Outs. C3 rims puck low for P5 to recover under token pressure from P6. C3 makes a few evasive moves then walks out to attack the net.
- C4- Corner Battles. C4 passes puck down the wall to P7 who is put under full pressure by the defender, P8. P7 tries to escape the corner to get to the front of the net for a scoring chance. P8 tries to contain and strip the puck.
- Focus on puck protection and evasive moves to shake the defender.
- C1- Cloverleaf (no puck). P1 weaves through the cones in a cloverleaf pattern making quick left and right turns. No puck.
- C2- Cloverleaf (with puck). P2 weaves through the cones in a cloverleaf pattern making quick left and right turns with a puck.
- C3- Cutting Hands. P4 passes to P3 then puts token pressure on P3 as P3 drives wide around P4 to the net.
- C4- Stress Net Drives. P5 and P6 line up on the blue line with P6 slightly behind P5. C4 passes outside to P5 to start 1v1 battle to the net. P5 tries to battle inside to get a scoring chance as P6 tries to force him outside.
- Focus on Quick, tight turns with acceleration out of each turn.
- Good puck protection, keeping your feet moving as you drive to the net. Try to establish good body position to better protect the puck on net drives.