photo: Gus Galloway
It’s been six years since InGoal Magazine’s own Paul Campbell declared Nov. 1 International Goalie Day in honour of Jacque Plante’s definitive contribution to the position by putting on a mask, and since then we’ve tried to find unique ways to mark this special occasion.
To celebrate, we’re unlocking some of our favourite stories from the past year, allowing goalies from all over the world to enjoy some of the unique position-specific content you can normally only find with an InGoal Premium Membership. It includes video breakdowns and lessons from some of the best goalies and coaches in the NHL, including Vezina Trophy winners Connor Hellebuyck and Linus Ullmark, and rising stars like Devon Levi and Thatcher Demko.
We’ll start with Ullmark. The deserving Vezina winner spent 45 minutes sitting down with InGoal midway through the season for Pro Reads, but he also graciously explained one of the key changes in his game — the addition of subtle backwards flow, even on in-zone play, that Boston goalie coach Bob Essensa calls “recoil” — played a role in his breakout season.
As mentioned above, Ullmark also spent a significant amount of time reviewing video during a visit to Vancouver last season, and we’ve published nine different Pro Reads breakdowns with the Vezina winner since then, including this one on managing deflections with lateral release, which is now unlocked for everyone to now watch and enjoy by clicking this image:
Pro Reads has quickly become the most popular part an InGoal Magazine Premium Membership because it allows goalies of all ages and skills to get better at reading the game by learning how the best goalies in the world process plays in real time, sharing insights on the most important factors when it comes to choosing depth, post-integrations and save selections.
But Pro Reads can also become a “How (and When) To” manual on technical and elements of the game for goalies, and there were few better examples of this over the past season than Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Matt Murray’s nearly 10-minute video on managing screens.
Murray excelled statistically with screens, so it made sense to start there during our nearly hour-long video session this summer, but the two-time Stanley Cup winner also made it clear how important the ability to process the game is, and that’s what Pro Reads is all about.
“These reads are kind of the equalizer for a guy like me,” Murray explained. “I’ve got the size and I’ve got the brain for it — I read the play well — but there are a lot of guys in the League that are a lot more athletic than I am and it’s a good lesson for young goalies that there are other equalizers, you don’t always have to be just the best athlete. Being good with these types of reads and little technical details can really help your game.”
Vezina Trophy winner Connor Hellebuyck has expressed similar sentiments when it comes to his ability to read the game being a difference maker, and there’s no place he excels more at those reads than when facing rush chances, so of course we had him explain how he does it:
Getting back to the “How To” concept, Vancouver Canucks star Thatcher Demko delivered a masterclass on his use of the Reverse, or reverse-VH, in two of his 10 Pro Reads sessions. We unlocked Part 1 below for everyone (but you’ll have to subscribe for Part 2):
Of course, Demko has also been featured prominently in our Pro Drills section on the ice with Canucks goalie coach Ian Clark, including a three-part series of “Hand In Support” drills:
Did you know there are over 100 Pro Drills in the InGoal archives? An annual membership to InGoal Premium gets you access to all of them, including some of our early work on the ice with Carey Price, which has since been featured in dozens of Pro Drills and Pro Tips like this one:
And we continue to add to those archives, investing in trips like this summer to Montreal where we got to go on the ice with Buffalo Sabres rising star Devon Levi and his long time goalie coach:
We also take you inside NHL rooms for advice on everything from practice habits to equipment, getting answers to the hard questions, like why does Juuse Saros have three batting gloves?
We also feature mental advice from NHL goalies, and some of it also includes equipment:
We’ve got advice for parents, too:
Add it all up, and there are almost 800 articles already posted at InGoalMag.com. We’re happy to unlock and share these 11 as part of our celebration of International Goalie Day, and if you find yourself wanting more, remember it’s only $50 (Canadian!!) to join us at InGoal Premium.
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