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The Elite Goal Scorers

from Jonathan Quick at The Players' Tribune,

There are certain complexities to the game at the NHL level that can only be explained if you’ve seen them firsthand on the ice. That’s why I wanted to write this piece explaining what makes Elite Snipers so difficult to deal with for goaltenders....

Pavel Datsyuk

Datsyuk is probably the most deceptive player in the NHL. He’s a magician in the way that he’s able to hide the puck on his stick. Part of that is his hardware. He uses a type of blade that is pretty unusual in the league. It’s a lot thicker from top to bottom, and somehow when you combine this with his quick release and the fact that he’s hardly ever looking at the net when he shoots, it’s extremely difficult to track the puck coming off his blade.

Like I said above, 90 percent of the save happens before the guy releases the puck. Most guys have a little tell. You look at where the puck is in relation to their feet, or the way they’re bending their knees to get ready to shoot, and you just know what’s going to happen before it happens. But the problem with Datsyuk is that he fools you with his intentions. He will be way out on the wall with his hands, feet, and eyes positioned for a cross-ice pass — and it’s the right decision. It’s what 99 percent of players will do in that situation. So you instantly start cheating your eyes over to where he’s going to pass. Next thing you know — what the hell? — the puck is behind you in the net. He shot it. Who shoots from there? Datsyuk shoots from there.

read on for more on Datsyuk and other players...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jonathan+quick


awould's avatar

Good read.

Posted by awould on 07/29/15 at 11:14 AM ET

KelseyAnn's avatar

That was an amazing read, it’s always fun to get a true “insider’s perspective”.

I got addicted and continued on to read Kevin Shattenkirk’s write ups on elite defenseman (there’s a part 1 and 2) and Logan Couture’s writeup on elite centers, which were both really good as well.

Posted by KelseyAnn from Ahwatukee, Arizona on 07/29/15 at 11:16 AM ET

Mistercristo's avatar

If anyone still hasn’t checked out this site, they’re lacking hockey insight.

Posted by Mistercristo from Cameron Frye's garage, circa 1987 on 07/29/15 at 12:58 PM ET

Canucklehead's avatar

That was a great article.  All the hockey articles on there have been pretty good.  I wish they had more hockey articles, but some of the other articles (basketball, football) have been good too.  It’s nice to get a different perspective on these athletes.

Posted by Canucklehead from Ottawa, Ontario on 07/29/15 at 01:15 PM ET

Hank1974's avatar

The Players Tribune is a great site and is quickly becoming a favourite of mine.

But like Mistercristo said, it’s lacking depth in the hockey dept.

I don’t think the site can be faulted as it’s driven by the players themselves.
I’m glad to see some NHLers are comfortable breaking from the idea that all hockey players have to be boring dullards who aren’t allowed to speak ever, unless it’s in the cadence of one mindless cliche after another.

Hopefully we get an article from Kaner one day about how he likes to woo ladies in an Arby’s bathroom, haha.

Posted by Hank1974 on 07/29/15 at 01:29 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Good article.  I actually think my favorite part of it is near the beginning when Quick is breaking down his save on Patrick Kane, and Doughty’s role in it.

Posted by Primis on 07/29/15 at 02:04 PM ET

WingsFanInBeanLand's avatar

“There’s not a single part of Crosby’s game that we can take advantage of.”

Hank Zetterberg can let you in on that little secret.

Posted by WingsFanInBeanLand from where free agents no longer dare. on 07/30/15 at 02:48 PM ET

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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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