Three hockey shots we would all love to perfect
Sometimes you just have to see it to believe it! Some examples of offbeat goal scoring.
For any hockey player, there’s nothing like the feeling of scoring a beauty. Whether it means getting into the ideal position to take that shot or simply the filthy finish itself, quality goal scoring takes time and practice to perfect.
For inspiration, just check out these exceptional pro players. Each has managed to craft a special offbeat goal-scoring style of their own, allowing them to stand out from the crowd when they take that final shot.
Some players like to drive the puck low, while others prefer to aim for the inside of either post. Any way you slice it, the unique finishing style that Charlie McAvoy of the Boston Bruins has mastered has a name of its own. The official Bruins Twitter account calls his amazing scoring technique #ApplePickin, per the hashtag.
Since being drafted, McAvoy has exploded as a defenseman, citing Tampa Bay Lightning’s Ryan McDonagh as one of his major inspirations. That said, 22-year-old McAvoy has honed plenty of exceptional talents of his own during the last three seasons as a key player on the ice for his team.
Regardless of where he is around the net, it doesn’t matter if the angle is tight for the shot. McAvoy has proven he can fire the puck top shelf practically every time; it is what has now become recognized as his trademark scoring finish. Such precision—along with the support of an excellent team around him—means that the Bruins are one of hockey’s betting favorites, ahead of the 2020-21 NHL season.
Lacrosse-Style Offbeat Goal Scoring
Sometimes there is offbeat goal scoring you just have to see to believe. Usually it’s because the goals are so outlandish and outrageous, you have to put the highlight reel on repeat just so you can marvel at watching them again and again. Then when you think you’ve seen it all, don’t be surprised to see someone like Andrei Svechnikov do something you rarely ever witness.
The 20-year-old Russian winger has taken the NHL by storm during his last two seasons with the Carolina Hurricanes, after they picked him up in the second round of the 2018 NHL Draft. Since then his progress has been phenomenal. That is the only way to describe his lacrosse-style finish scored in October 2019, despite skating behind the rival goal.
Mike Legg was the first to try this move successfully, with the University of Michigan in 1996. While the style itself is entirely legal in ice hockey, it’s remarkably difficult to do with any degree of success. And in the NHL, nobody had ever bothered to try. That was until Svechnikov tried and succeeded, not just once but numerous times after his first lacrosse-style goal.
Juggle & Strike
Across the Atlantic, in Ireland, ice hockey doesn’t really figure too prominently among the popular sports. However, there is a frenetic Gaelic game known as hurling which traces its roots back to prehistoric times. To the casual viewer, it appears to be a cross between field hockey, soccer, and rugby. Hurling is played with a stick, and one of the key skills is juggling the ball.
What’s that got to do with ice hockey? Well, during the 2018-19 season Pittsburg Penguins center Sidney Crosby demonstrated his amazing skill with the stick. Juggling the puck with a pass to himself, he then smashed it home to a powerful finish. If you look at the replay and then compare it with some hurling action, you will quickly see the similarities.
Crosby scored this technically brilliant goal against the Montreal Canadiens in March 2018. And just to show it wasn’t a one-off, he repeated the same style of goal three times during that season. That’s why the Juggle and Strike approach he perfected is considered so good, it made the top ten of the most creative NHL goals ever, according to ESPN.
Practice Makes Perfect
It goes without saying that trying to score any of the goals highlighted here takes time and patience to truly master. Shot selection is an important element of scoring goals. If you can come up with something genuinely difficult for the rival goalie to block, there’s absolutely no reason not to keep taking the same approach.
Of course, it’s always better to have a variety of tricks up your sleeve. That means a lot of work and creativity to get the hang of different techniques. Nevertheless, all that practice on (and off) the ice will eventually hone your precision, making the effort worthwhile.