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With the World Junior Championships underway in an Edmonton bubble, we’re going back-to-back with Pro Reads from last year’s gold-medal winner and top goaltender, Joel Hofer.

The Team Canada goalie is currently preparing to start his first season with the St. Louis Blues, so it still qualifies as a Pro Read but we’re looking at plays against Finland in the semi-final of last year’s tournament in the Czech Republic. Hofer, who was named the tournament’s top goalie after going 5-0-0 with a .939 save percentage, broke down a poke check on a sharp-angle attack last week. This time the 20-year-old walks us through a play behind the net.

​The Scenario

The play starts below the goal line in the Canadian zone with a Finnish player driving behind the net from Hofer’s right, and with both passing options still on that same side:

Taking a quick look at the situation above, what stands out to you as the biggest threat, and how would that affect the way you come across in terms of managing your vision — and when to temporarily give up that visual attachment by switching sides?

Once Hofer does get across with the puck carrier, the biggest threat has changed:

What do you think of using paddle down here? Can you see the benefit? What about risks?

The Save

Now take a look at the entire save sequence. Much like last week’s Pro Read with Hofer, the end result of the play might surprise you based on the build-up above:

Now that you’ve seen how this play ends, it’s time to hear from Hofer as he walks us through several important elements of his post-play preferences, including stick position:

The Pro-Read

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