I’ve had a few questions come in recently on the 1-2-2 Forecheck. Specifically, coaches are looking for ways to beat it. The 1-2-2 is a great forecheck, but, as is the case with any system, it’s beatable. Your objective is to control the puck, drawing players out of position, then beating them with a pass. Here are the key points:
How to Beat the 1-2-2 Forecheck
1. Defenseman carries the puck to open ice
2. Defenseman walks the puck until someone comes to get him (if nobody comes, he walks all the way down the ice!)
3. As soon as F2 or F3 leaves their coverage to attack the Defenseman, he or she moves the puck to that side of the ice, hitting the now-open player with the pass
4. At this point you’ve got two players beat, and you’re walking out of the zone in an odd-man rush
Some Frequently Asked Questions on the Swing Regroup
In our Coaches’ Training Course we outline the fundamentals of the Swing Regroup, which is one of my favorite regroup set-ups. Over the past few weeks, I’ve received a number of emails with questions on the Swing Regroup. So I figured it was time to put together an FAQ video.
The problem many coaches were having, was differentiating between the “textbook version” and the “read and react version.” In other words… in a perfect world, we draw up the play, and the players perform it exactly as diagrammed, AKA textbook execution. However, in the actual game, sometimes it happens as planned, but many times it doesn’t. In these cases there’s a degree of improvisation that needs to be accounted for… this is where the read and react comes into play.
So, let’s start with our ideal, textbook diagram, then we’ll go from there:
1. Defensemen drag skate puck back and toward the middle, passing D to D as needed
2. Forwards swing through the receiving zones, presenting themselves as options
3. Defensemen read pressure, and pass up-ice to one of the forwards
4. Forwards attack the offensive zone under control
Obviously, players must understand the textbook version in order to make proper decisions in the game. This idea holds true with any system you’re looking to implement. I recommend teaching and practicing the textbook version of your set-up, then also going through some of the possible variations in chalk-talk. Make sure your players understand that they’re allowed to adapt to the game situation! Your objective should be to provide them with the system framework, then to encourage creativity within it.
Transition from Sagging Zone, and Sagging Zone Arrow, to Breakout
Well-designed systems should lead from one objective to the next. For example, your defensive zone coverage set-up should put you in proper position to gain the puck back and initiate a breakout. Your breakout should set you up to enter the neutral zone with proper support, and in a strong offensive attack position. The three DZC systems discussed in this post are very effective because they transition well into breakouts after you get the puck back.
CLICK HERE to watch our video on “Initiating a Hockey Breakout”