Here's a goalie thing I've been thinking about for a few days and something I'm finally piecing together as a reason I get burned sometimes:
You know how when the puck is beside or behind your net and you're on the post, but then it gets passed either up the boards or even somewhere in the slot?
The reaction you SHOULD have is to make the appropriate depth change as you square up to the puck's new position, which usually means at least being at the top of the crease.
The reaction *I* have is to just square up with the puck, but I'm almost always still at least halfway deep in my crease. I'm thinking about why that is so that I can change my reaction.
I think the reason I do that is because when there are lots of bodies around me, I get nervous about back-door plays, so I want to stay deep and basically not have a 3 feet of empty space behind me for opponents to fire a rebound if it goes off deeper to the sides.
Here's a picture of my nightmare scenario and the reason my mind tethers me to the net. Obviously, I leave a LOT of open net in the B position, so anybody who can lift the puck and has some aim to their shot probably has a goal there, but if it's on the ice, I'm stopping it AND the rebound as the amount of lateral movement required to get over and stop that rebound is minimal. Whereas in the A position, I'm in a great position to block the shot, but am pretty much helpless on the rebound. Kinda have to hope you swallow it there.
So, I know I need to get it more instinctive to push out higher when play moves from out behind my net, which means getting over the fear in the image above. I mean, if you're playing the odds, I think you're still better with A, but it's hard to convince myself of that in the heat of the moment.
Lord knows I've done plenty of "push off the post to the top of the crease" drills, but when it's a drill with a set movement pattern ("start here, go here, shot"), maybe I'm developing a movement skill, but I'm not learning to react to a specific situation where there's variable risks involved.
In other words, if I've got one person shooting on me in a drill, there's no risk in coming way out of the crease. But when I can see a couple of opposing jerseys out of the corner of my eye and maybe my defense isn't all that stellar.... oooo baby am I cheating back and playing deep.
Maybe there's a happy medium? I'm not sure.
Thoughts from my goalie peeps? Compliments on my stick figure prowess?