Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 06/06/13 at 12:07 PM ET
from Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province,
“It’s kind of a running joke that everyone thinks goalies are too good because their gear is too big,” said the Vancouver Canucks starter, part of a five-member NHL Players’ Association contingent that met with one owner, three general managers and a coach at the NHL office. “When you look at it, in 2000 the average goalie was six-feet tall and now it’s 6-foot-2. That’s part of it. The position has gotten bigger and faster — just like the rest of the game — and they’re making changes to compensate.
“Maybe it’s a natural progression to take away some of our blocking area to score goals. It’s not something as a goalie you want to hear with all the time and effort you put into the position. It’s muscle memory and repetition and when those repetitions change, they can throw you off.”
That said, Schneider realizes the game continues to evolve and scoring is at a premium. It’s rare to see a shooter blast a puck past a stopper without the aid of a screen or deflection. Goals most often come from a rebound into the slot or from goalmouth scrambles that resemble mosh pits.
It’s to the point where well protected goalies bemoan pucks that go through them — especially between the arm and body — because their razor-sharp reflexes and quick post-to-post movements negate those opportunities. In that sense, Schneider understands what’s at play and that the NHL board of governors will do anything to advance scoring. And bigger isn’t better when it comes to goalie mobility.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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