Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Puck Handling Goalies

from Andrew Berkshire at the Winnipeg Free Press,

Mike Smith, for example, is seen by many as one of the better puckhandlers in the game, but the risks inherent in his daring play have led to quite a few goals against.

Is it actually worth risking those extra goals against for goalies to play pucks? Do they have a discernible impact on breakouts? Is it safer to just stay in the net and let defencemen handle it all?...

The over-arching theme is going to be whether it’s better for a defenceman or a goaltender to handle a puck, and we’re going to look at this season combined with the last two seasons in order to amass a sizable sample.

For starters, we’ll look at the risk involved in goaltenders handling the puck; how well do they manage pucks? Over the last three seasons, defencemen have succeeded on 68.9 per cent of their attempted plays with the puck in the defensive zone, while goaltenders have succeeded on 65.8 per cent. That’s not a promising start for goaltenders, but it also makes sense. Goalie equipment is bulky, leading to slower movement and more clunky plays.

But more than just failing on plays, what about turnovers?

Since the start of the 2017-18 season, defencemen have turned the puck over in the defensive zone on 13.7 per cent of their attempt plays with the puck, while goaltenders over the same period of time have turned the puck over just 9.3 per cent of the time.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink


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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.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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