There are only four games left in the hockey season1 and I have ridiculously bad stats. The weird thing is, I haven’t felt like I’ve been playing badly. In fact, I feel like I’ve been playing better than last year. I feel like my skating has improved (I even remember to keep my feet moving more of the time2), I’m better at making changes3, I’m opening up for the pass more than I used to, I’m getting in front of the net to be ready to pick up rebounds/screen the goalie4 and my shot, although still terrible, is slightly less terrible than it used to be. But despite all of that I just can’t seem to put. the. puck. in. the. net.
Now, I suppose that this might have to do with the fact that we are in a higher division this season so our competition is tougher. Fewer goals overall is going to translate into fewer points for individual players. But that doesn’t make it any less frustrating!
Anyway, I have a game this evening so send me positive hockey vibes and then maybe, just maybe, I’ll get myself a point tonight, k?
Update: We lost 2-0. Boo! Clearly you all weren’t sending enough positive hockey vibes my way! Or maybe you sent them and they got intercepted by the other team. Yeah, that’s probably what happened. My next game is on Tuesday night (UBC Rec team), so try sending those hockey vibes to me… maybe I need two full days of sustained positive hockey vibe action!
1In my regular hockey league. I’m not even talking about my UBC Rec hockey team. Let’s just say that league is more for fun than it is for, say, winning.
2As silly as this may sound, it’s actually quite difficult to remember to keep your feet moving when you are, say, racing for the puck or waiting for a pass. Hockey skates let you glide, but gliding won’t get you to the puck before the opposing player, let me tell you!
3For the hockey uninitiated, “making a change” refers to getting off the ice at the end of your shift so that another player can get on the ice. This can be done well (e.g., you keep your shift short and fast, you don’t change when the opposing team is in your end of the ice) or poorly (e.g., you stay out on the ice too long (and thus, you are too tired to be any use out there) or you change when the opposing team is in your end (and thus the other team temporarily has more players on the attack than you have on the defence).a
aThis reminds me – Raul asked me to write a sort of “beginner’s guide to hockey” guest post for his blog… which I totally meant to do but have been sooo swamped it’s not even funny. I promise I’ll do it, R, but it might not be ’til after exams. Just in time for the NHL playoffs, though!
4Screening the goalie is actually one of my favourite things to do. It involves standing in front of the goalie to block their view so that someone on your team with a good shot can take said shot, which the goalie won’t be able to see very well because you are doing said screening. I mean, you are also right there ready & waiting for a rebound so it’s perfectly legit. But boy does it make the goalie mad.