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Richard A. Whittaker/Icon Sportswire
Post play and the importance of clean entries into the post was a big part of our last Pro Drills breakdown with Calgary Flames goaltending coach Jason LaBarbera focused on crease management, and that theme continues in this new drill featuring David Rittich.
It’s a theme that continues in the latest instalment with LaBarbera and Rittich, a three-step progression of drills that starts with the goalie going into the post and bumping across the crease to the other side before getting a shot from three different locations.
So, why all the focus on post integration and movement?
“It’s actually amazing for me coming back to this level and watching a lot of video, a lot of the game is around the boards,” LaBarbera said. “It’s low-to-high, pucks behind the net because of the way teams defend — they are all inside the dots — so it’s all about trying to expand team’s defending and then trying to find those open areas in tight, in the slot, inside the dots. It’s like a merry go round. It happens a ton. It’s crazy how much it happens now and for goalies that can do it and be organized and clean it makes the next save or the next play so much easier.”
With an eye towards achieving that, this entire three-progression drill took just under five minutes to do on both sides, including short rest breaks in between the short sets.
It started with the goalie coach having pucks behind the net on one side while the goalie sets up square to the faceoff dot on the other side. The goalie goes into his near side post, and bumps across to the far post where the goalie coach attacks with a jam or quick shot in tight.
LaBarbera explains it quickly before we share examples from both sides in this video:
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