Seems like I’m doing a lot of Q&A work these days! There have been quite a few questions on the Neutral Zone Trap I diagrammed up a few years ago. So I decided to make a quick clarification video to resolve some of these questions. Before we jump straight in, let me just state again that there are many ways of structuring systems. Sometimes these differences are adjustments to what the other team is doing, sometimes they’re just the coach’s personal preference. Either way, use this info if it makes sense for your situation. If not, don’t use it! Here are a few key points to remember:
Neutral Zone Trap
1. The trap is a CONCEPT: make it look like the board-side breakout is open, then systematically shut it down
2. There is more than one way this can be done
3. Adjustments should be made depending on how high the opposing team’s wingers are, and where the breakout is initiating from
4. Ability to angle will make or break the trap – funnel the breakout into the “kill zone”
5. Try to shut down the other team’s breakout BEFORE the red line (to eliminate the option for a dump in)
6. Generate offense with quick NZ transitions after the turnover!
Awesome Hockey Forechecking Drill that Works on Multiple Game Situations
I’ve been using this Hockey Forechecking Drill in my practices, and it has worked really well for my team. The thing I really like about it, is that it allows you to work on a lot of different stuff at once. Obviously, the main focus is forechecking, but you’re also working on D-Zone Coverage, and Breakouts as well.
Here’s how the drill works:
5 forecheckers start at center ice
5 defenders at each end
Coach dumps puck in, defenders attempt to break out, or play d-zone coverage, depending on how quickly the forecheckers get in
Forecheckers execute whichever forechecking system the coach designates
Play continues until defending team breaks out, or until the forecheckers score
If defending team breaks out, forecheckers peel off as soon as puck crosses blue line. After breaking out, the defenders cross the red line, dump it in, and become the NEW forecheckers at the other end.
If the forechecking team scores, coach blows two quick whistles to kill the play, then dumps a new puck into the far end. Defending team hustles to the far end to become the NEW forecheckers.
Give this one a go – I think you’ll get some good usage out of it!