Setting Up The Net/Slot Zone Deflection Play
Every successful Power Play (PP) unit is focused in zone on trying to take the puck to the net to create quality scoring chances. There are several tactics deployed by the PP unit to force defenders to move their feet and require them to defend the puck carrier and players without the puck, which opens up passing and shooting seams/lanes & breaks down the defensive structure of the PK unit.
The tactics deployed by a PP unit to infiltrate and break down the defensive structure include but are not limited to the following:
- Player and puck movement at different levels within the zone.
- Movement of the puck around the perimeter of the defensive structure, side to side & up and down within the zone.
- Players without the puck finding open ice to support the puck by creating passing lanes.
- Outnumbering the defenders in a specific area in zone to create a player advantage.
- Give and Go plays to take advantage of an outnumbered situation.
- Movement of the puck strong side to weak side on the boards & cross ice.
- Movement of the puck to a player in the Prime Scoring Area.
- Patience with the puck to make quality puck management decisions.
- Always moving (never stationary) to force defenders to move their feet to create time and space.
Setting up the Net Slot Zone Deflection Play is no different than setting up the cross ice “Shooter”. The PP unit utilizes the same tactics to force defenders into coverage to create time and space and break down or infiltrate the defensive structure of the Penalty Kill (PK) unit.
In the video below you see an excellent example of the tactics deployed by the PP unit to set up the Net Zone Deflection that results in a goal. The puck is moved from down low to up top to force defenders to cover the puck carrier who is a potential shooter. The player and puck movement opens up a passing and deflection lane for the PP unit player located in the PSA with his stick on the ice ready to deflect the puck from P#55.
Play Options – Bottom 3 PP Unit Group
- Deflection by the player in middle ice or low weak side
- Pass to strong side low F (anchor) who passes to player in middle ice or low weak side
- All 3 low F’s positioned for rebound on a puck on net
The Net Slot Zone Deflection Play provides an option for creating scoring chances on the Power Play. It is a good option to exploit the defensive structure of the PK unit. The key is having players in roles with the skills to execute the play.