Neutral Zone Transition Skills

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Here are a couple of drills that are good when working with players individually or in small groups.  The focus of this drill is on a neutral zone turnover situation that happens numerous times in a game.  In order to do it well the players must have good footwork. 

The drill starts by the defense skating forwards from the blue line up to the  coach and transitioning backwards (they should transition towards the center of the ice).  The coach will place a puck just inside the blue line (simulating the turnover).  In step 1, The player needs to open up (no crossovers) and skate forwards to retreive the puck. Step 2, the player retrieves the puck while facing up ice and mainaining control.  Step 3 the player moves to the middle fo the ice to while maintaining possession and moving their feet.  In step 4 the player opens up to a forward skate and explodes in to the open ice.  At the blue line they make a pass back to the coach and repeat the drill.

In series #2 the drill runs the same way except the player has another option.  This time, in step 4, the player does an escape move as they transition and skate with the puck up the boards before giving a pass back to the coach.


Eric Park on 2/22/2018


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