Sunday, September 5, 2010

The talking d-man & how I wrap a goalie stick

Novice had a fun practice last night. For the drills portion, they set the goals up cross ice and played 3 on 3. You never realize how much you rely on your posts being firmly set in the ice until you have to play with them unpegged. And doing 3 on 3 is even worse, since lots of shots are close in at tight angles, so you do lots of post hugging.

Still, it was good, clean fun.

We scrimmaged after and I fell even more in love with my favorite defenseman. There was a bunch of traffic in front of my net and he was on my glove side with more of a clear view.

He recognized that I probably couldn't see very well what the shooter was doing so he said, "SHOT COMING!" when the shooter was winding up. Since I figured I was covered up high with all the bodies, I just butterflied and got my glove and blocker out to try and prevent any corner picking.

I think the puck ended up hitting someone in front of me and my team took it out of the zone, but as they were skating out, I thanked my dman and told him I LOVE when they talk to me.

He was surprised. He said he thought goalies hated that and were like, "STFU" when the D talked to them.

I explained that yeah, I don't want to hear that I'm playing well or, even worse, goaltending advice, but to give me information to help me do my job in the moment? Fuck yeah. All day long.

Maybe I'm only speaking for myself there, but I can't imagine a goalie NOT wanting their defensemen to be their "eyes" at times. His play and his interaction with me really makes the game exponentially more fun.

And really, just in general, I'm having so much fun playing right now. I'm not playing lights out or anything, but I feel good, I'm not stressed or angsty or beating myself up for this or that. Nor am I thinking I've got anything figured out that I don't. I'm just playing a game and this feels like how I always wanted it to feel. Well, with more goals against than I'd want. :)


I finally decided to retire my first Khudobin stick after last night. It's still in reasonable shape after playing with it for over a year, but it's time for a fresh one. So I taped up the one I bought at the Aeros gear sale this year and it's so lovely in its clean whiteness.

I noticed that Anton switched from a Sherwood 530 to a 9950 last year. The pattern doesn't seem real different but I do see that the edges of the paddle are thinner than on the 530. Since that's the first place the 530 started falling apart, I'm much more wary of this stick not being as durable.

Though I think my taping style will help, as I think that's what made my old one last for so long. I actually stole it off of Brusty's picture in the Aeros calendar last year as he worked on a truck motor in full gear with his goalie stick. Cuz that's how he rolls. Mr. April is handsome, handy, and educational!

I tape the knob as usual, then I run a strip down both edges of the paddle to protect those edges a bit. On the back edge of the paddle, I run the strip all the way to the toe of the blade to give the heel and bottom of the blade some reinforcement.

Then I wrap a double-thick strip around where I grip the paddle. This helps me hang on to the stick better and secures the ends of the strips running along the edges of the paddle.

And then start the blade wrapping at the bottom of the paddle, do 2 wraps to tack down the paddle edge tape, and then leave a gap at the heel and wrap the blade like normal, including covering the toe and cutting the excess off. Oh, and then Blade Butter where it touches the ice. MUST have Blade Butter.

Like this, but with white tape instead of red. :)

Might seem like a lot of tape and might make the stick too heavy but if my weak little girl arms can manage it, I'm pretty sure anyone can. Well worth it to lengthen the life of your stick. I call it the Viagra taping job. :)


Okay, enough of that. Time to enjoy some really beautiful weather and absolutely nothing on the agenda today that HAS to be done. Thinking dog park, maybe a snow cone. But tomorrow the work begins. We're having the total interior of the house painted and I have to get all the window coverings and art off the walls and knick-knacks out of the way for them to work.

It's gonna be bitchin' though. Burnt orange on the walls of the man cave, lime green in my office... ahh, color!


maalivahti  September 5, 2010 at 1:06 PM  

I'm with you 100% on the heads-up kind of talking from the D. I love when I'm looking for a rebound in the completely wrong spot (duh) and someone yells "right side!" or "by your foot!". Yay for talkative D. I know it goes both ways too... my D was on me for a while about not talking enough, and I finally battled through the shyness and started yelling stuff out a lot more.

Ms. Conduct  September 5, 2010 at 1:29 PM  

You're so right, and one thing I want to do sometime is sit down with an experienced defenseman and talk about what they want from a goalie. I try to help them, but I honestly don't understand the position so I'm not sure what's helpful. Like, when I yell "one on"... how "on" does the opposition need to be for them to want to hear that?

In fact, some times I'm saying "one on" and someone else is telling them they've got time. LOL

sportshurtmore  September 5, 2010 at 4:14 PM  

It's really nice to hear a goalie's POV on d-men and talking/not talking on the ice, just because so often it's hard to judge whether comments are appreciated/annoying/useful/etc (and I know it varies person-to-person, and what kinds of comments, but you get my point).

Also, what do you mean white tape instead of red? You mean you don't go for the neon green? ;)

General FYI: I'm back in town (finally - 1 wk in San Diego, 1 week in Northern MN, 2 weeks in Russia), and by extension I'm actually back on the computer regularly, so I'll probably be poking my nose in more often again!

artandhockey  September 5, 2010 at 4:27 PM  

Sounds very sensible.. to talk it out with a defense guy! Ask and ye shall receive!
Hav efun with the new colors! It was always a perk me upper when we did new paint as homeowners!

Ms. Conduct  September 5, 2010 at 5:21 PM  

Right, Christa? I can't believe we waited 6 years to paint!

Glad to have you back! Russia! Mr.C did two weeks there a few years ago and it's still one of his favorite trips ever.

And yes, the more my D talks to me about the play around me the better. The only thing I'm on the fence about is saying "Cover!" because on one hand, that tells me I don't have it covered when I might think I do, but on the other, if I don't have it covered and think I do, then I clearly don't know where the puck is. Ha! So, I dunno.

Goody  September 7, 2010 at 10:31 AM  

I always try to help the goalie with my comments. Things such as "shot" when the D is winding up, "you've got it" when they've covered since it might not always be apparent (like when they're just clamped down and hoping), "right" or "left" when the puck's coming out from behind the net (that's their right or left, not mine), etc.

As a D, I want to hear "screen" when goalie can't see, "behind you" when someone has sneaked in there, or "corner" when the puck has gone there and I've lost track of it.

Simple stuff - information. I've pretty much found that the word "should" is a no-no. I won't tell you 'should', you don't tell me 'should' - deal? Ok, great, let's play!

Nick in New York  September 7, 2010 at 11:04 AM  

if anything, I talk to my d (or backcheckers) too much as a goalie.

I've been told it's especially helpful when their back is to the play. Like when they have to dig it out from the corner, or from behind the net. A buddy of mine will add distance to the "one on" call. As in "one on, 30 feet....20 feet....10....MOVE IT!"

In any event, I think it gets better with familiarity. The more a certain player is on the ice with you, the more they can interpret the relative amounts of anxiety in your voice when you yell the same thing (eg "one on") to them.

Ms. Conduct  September 7, 2010 at 11:25 AM  

Haha, yeah, for really urgent one-ons, I bust out the curling "HARD HARD!" THAT is fun to yell, lemme tell ya.

Nick  September 8, 2010 at 1:28 PM  

I use "one hard" or "one easy" to help my D gauge how much time they have. They've grown to understand my words as how I've assessed the situation with how good I think they (my defenseman) will fare against the attacker. In other words, if my stud d-man is going to the puck and their ankle-bender is coming after him ... "one easy"!

Ms. Conduct  September 8, 2010 at 1:32 PM  

Oh, I like that wording. I'm always thinking "One on slowwwwww" in those "you got this but don't totally dawdle" situations.

Nick  September 8, 2010 at 2:47 PM  

LOL, of course there's the alternative when I say nothing but "RIGHT NOW!" ... meaning stop thinking (WTF that may be) and do it!

Anonymous  September 8, 2010 at 5:27 PM  

Trying to teach young goalies to chatter is pretty tough, especially with the mouth guards in but I think it is a critical part of defensive play. Letting your team know what you see is huge and also the lack of visibility. You got it from D can be hard as they may not see the puck which could be moving. The D needs to work to tuck the puck into the goalie if it is trickling out of them. Tonight my goal with my team's goalie is to track the puck into the glove or off the blocker the rest of the team gets conditioning!

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