photo: John Cordes/Icon Sportswire
With the 2022-23 season underway, InGoal has set up some exciting Pro Reads video sessions with several top young NHL goalies later this month, which still gives us some time to empty the tank on past Pro Reads breakdowns with long-time stars like Ryan Miller.
This is the last of eight Pro Reads with Miller, who retired two summers ago after a career than included the most NHL wins by an American goalie (387), the 2010 Vezina Trophy and a silver medal as MVP of the 2010 Olympics during his 18 seasons in the NHL. Just as he did so many times over his career on the ice, Miller delivers in this finale, starting by breaking down a pair of similar looking plays near the goal line, and wrapping up with a long talk on the importance of building a relationship with your defense, and how much easier that can make these reads.
“It’s a cheat code,” Miller said of being able to trust your defensemen to make the same read.
Let’s start with the plays. The first features Miller facing a power play against the Chicago Blackhawks, and a pass down low from Patrick Kane to the side of the net:
As the puck is passed down near the goal line, who is the most dangerous player on the ice? Is it the guy with the puck now? The guy in the slot? The guy at the far side faceoff dot?
What do you make of Miller’s positioning here, and the decision to stay up rather than drop into a Reverse as that puck moves into a sharp-angle area? What factors are you looking for to determine whether you need to worry about protecting that short-side post at this point?
Watch the entire sequence now to see if you can spot other clues as to what comes next:
Was there anything about the sequence before the freeze frame, or the way Kane played this entire thing, that hinted at what was coming and why a reverse-VH wasn’t the play here?
THE SECOND SEQUENCE
This time Miller is facing a similar scenario on the other side, but he drops to the ice:
Are there any differences between the two plays that stand out to you?
THE SECOND SAVE
See if you can spot any more watching the entire sequence:
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