By: TomM (offline)  Sunday, July 24 2011 @ 01:31 PM GMT (Read 143433 times)  

Diary of a Season 2011-12

A couple of days ago I agreed to coach a U18 female AAA team in the Alberta midget league. The teams are spread across the Province and the winner plays for the National Championship. The league executive called me from Calgary when I was doing a hockey camp in Jasper. It is the highest level for high school aged girls and most of them want to get scholarships at the college level and play in the CIS, NCAA or ACAC.

After coming back from Europe I coached in the WWHL for two seasons. It is called a professional women's league and the players come from the college ranks but it is hard to attract players when they don't get paid. So many of the top players just play rec hockey and the ones that do play aren't very committed to practices or even games. The league folded and now there will be one team that will play in the CWHL vs the 3 teams in the Toronto area and the team in Boston and Montreal. I was surprised the Minnesota team isn't part of the league as they were very good and had many USA players. The league is trying to get sponsorship from the NHL like the women's pro basketball league did with the NBA.

Planning for the Season:
I haven't met with the executive yet by this is the info I have so far from our phone calls.
1. There is a general tryout of all the girl's in the age group.
2. There is a draft and you can protect a certain number of players who played for the team last year.
3. You keep 15 skaters and 2 goalies and have affiliates.
4. Travel is by chartered bus and the trips are from 1 to about 9 hours. You only make a few long ones.

Staff:
I select my own staff which is very important to me because an assistant with an agenda is poison for the team. I also need someone who understands and believes my coaching philosophy. I have contacted one girl who played goal for me in 2 championship seasons. She is considering it. I asked a friend who played pro for 10 years in Europe is going to coach his sons team.

Practices and Games:
Practices are Tuesday and Thursday before dinner and they have 2 games a week. I am not sure of the game days.
With 2 practices we will work on Offense Roles. Day 1 - individual offensive skills and team offensive skills. On Day 2 we will focus on Defensive Roles 3-4, checking the puck carrier and covering away from the puck.

I want to have dryland and classroom sessions once a week. Hopefull on the same day.

I will use the drills and games that I have posted in the files section for the on ice activity.
www.hockeycoachingabcs.com/filemgmt/index.php

A-skating and puckhandling.
B-individual skils such as puck handling, shooting, passing.
C-team play situations such as 2-1 or breakouts.
D-games and SAG for skill and game understanding.
DT-transition games to practice game situations such as a 2-1 using on puck and completing the play.
E-shootouts and contests.
T-coach directed training for team play.

I can't attach word documents here but if you go to the site below there are live links to the A-B-C-D-TD-T- E drills and games. Click on the doc file at the bottom of the posting.
hockeycoach.com/group/hockeydrills/forum/topics/diary-of-a-season-2011-12


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: hockeygod (offline)  Monday, July 25 2011 @ 04:12 PM GMT  

Tom good to hear you have the opportunity to coach a team. The players will be lucky to get you!
_______________


Dean
M.Ed (Coaching)
Ch.P.C. (Chartered Professional Coach)
Game Intelligence Training

"Great education depends on great teaching."

   

hockeygod



Registered:: 08/05/09

Posts: 2063
By: TomM (offline)  Thursday, August 04 2011 @ 12:14 PM GMT  

I got an official update about what happens in August and will have my first face to face meeting with the other coaches and the administrators next week.

The most effective goalie I had at the college women's level, i.e. the one who played best in big games, has agreed to work with my goalies.

I am also talking with a player I coached last year, who is on the National Team, about being an assistant coach. Her schedule is really tight. It would be great for the girl's to have a model to look up to who has been a NCAA All American and played in the World Championships.
--------------------------------------
Agenda for next weeks coach meeting sent to me.

A couple of important dates upcoming:

1) sometime in the next week or so, I need to meet with you and the other coaches to finalize the draft procedures for the upcoming tryouts. I have attached a preliminary doc that we are currently working on. Please review and let me know what questions and suggestions you have. Please note, this is a work in progress so some points may yet be revised.

2) Aug 15-19: GHC s hosting its first ever AAA midget prep camp. We have 2 groups of 22 skates and 4ish goalies that you and the other 2 midget AAA head coaches will be working with on the ice in a conditioning camp format. I have asked all 3 coaches to work together and run the camp. The camp is 1.25 hours long. The idea is to run the girls through drills for the first 50mins and then let them play pond hockey for the remaining time.

3) Aug 22-28: Midget AAA Tryout camp: This will be where you get to sit and watch the girls play to determine who you want to try and draft to be on your team.

4) Aug 29: Midget AAA Draft

5) Aug 30th: First team practice

6) Sept 11: Roster cut day

7) Sept 16: League play begins.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I still have to call the coach from last years team and ask who he would protect before the draft and get info on the league and how he approached it. Considering he had the top Calgary team and is a former NHL player I am sure he has many worthwhile insights.
-------------------------------------------------------------
A note concerning Women's Hockey.
Mrs. Snider has donalted 2 million to help develop female hockey. They just oppened a 4 plex that has 3 practice rinks and a 3000 seat arena and female hockey will get priority booking and it will be the home rink of Team Alberta, which replaces the 4 team league I coached in the last two seasons. They will have a permanent dressing room and play 3 game home and home series with the 5 teams in the east. 3 in the Toronto area, 1 in Montreal and 1 in Boston.
The league is trying to work out a deal with the NHL similar to the one the Women's BBall association did with the NBA to help it become viable.



'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: Anonymous: koala ()  Tuesday, August 09 2011 @ 02:10 AM GMT  

I think this is a calgary goalie you might be looking at this year

www.youtube.com/watch?v=LA7AiRJ-8Cw
--------------------------
Conditioning camp next week and tryouts the week after followed by a very complicated draft.
I want a goalie who stops pucks that should be stopped so the team knows how to play the rush. If she shows she can do that and is available I will choose her.

By: TomM (offline)  Friday, August 12 2011 @ 01:52 AM GMT  

We had our coaches meeting tonight and found out about the ice times for the conditioning camp that starts next week as well as how many players we can protect and how the draft will run. It seems to be very well thought out. 2 practices a week for 3 weeks and 3 practices one week per month plus one dryland session.

Games start in the middle of Sept. and are on the weekend. We travel by charter bus.

I was asked to run the two practices on Monday night. There will be two groups of 22 skaters and 2 goalies and they have a 75 min. session. So starting Monday things will get busy for the next 6 or 7 months.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Monday, August 15 2011 @ 02:55 PM GMT  

All of the players trying out for the AAA midget league have a week of conditioning before next weeks tryouts. I am running the first pactice and have attached a pdf of the practice plan.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: Kai K (offline)  Monday, August 15 2011 @ 04:08 PM GMT  

Hi all,

I've been quite busy with hockey and playing father to my 3 years old daughter. But I'll try to be more active in the future.

So it's the start of the fourth week on-ice practicing. First two weeks was skills focused and now last and this week we'll work more on the defensive skills and individual tactics and some team tactics too. attachment includes our todays practice. Team is U15 team.

------------------------------------------

Looks like a good practice plan Kai. How did it go?

Tom


Kai

   

Kai K



Registered:: 06/10/09

Posts: 159
By: hockeygod (offline)  Monday, August 15 2011 @ 04:57 PM GMT  

Hi Kai,

Yeah it's lots of work being a dad! My son is almost 3.5 years old and my daughter turned 1 in June.

I hope to head over to the rink to watch some of Tom's practices tonight.

We are on holidays from Aug 20-Sept 1, then I start with the teaching when I get back, so will post more then.

Dean


Dean
M.Ed (Coaching)
Ch.P.C. (Chartered Professional Coach)
Game Intelligence Training

"Great education depends on great teaching."

   

hockeygod



Registered:: 08/05/09

Posts: 2063
By: hockeygod (offline)  Tuesday, August 16 2011 @ 04:59 PM GMT  

Watched part of Tom's conditioning camp practice last night and then we discussed the drills / games he used. About 21 skaters and 2 goalies. Tom has some good ideas about how to increase the number of weekly practices available to these midget AAA girls by working together with the other 2 Calgary based teams / coaches - I hope it works. Regardless, Tom will help improve the level of understanding of his players - those girls whom he chooses in the draft will be fortunate to have such an experienced coach...!


Dean
M.Ed (Coaching)
Ch.P.C. (Chartered Professional Coach)
Game Intelligence Training

"Great education depends on great teaching."

   

hockeygod



Registered:: 08/05/09

Posts: 2063
By: TomM (offline)  Thursday, August 18 2011 @ 07:04 PM GMT  

Tonights practice is the 4th day in a row on the ice. We will do skills for 30 minutes and competition for 45 minutes.

I made a little change and substituted the 3rd perry pearn for a full ice game where they had to pass at least once in each zone. Gr. one played 10-10 and group two played two shifts of 6-6.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: Kai K (offline)  Saturday, August 20 2011 @ 05:27 PM GMT  

Quote by: Kai K

Hi all,

I've been quite busy with hockey and playing father to my 3 years old daughter. But I'll try to be more active in the future.

So it's the start of the fourth week on-ice practicing. First two weeks was skills focused and now last and this week we'll work more on the defensive skills and individual tactics and some team tactics too. attachment includes our todays practice. Team is U15 team.

------------------------------------------

Looks like a good practice plan Kai. How did it go?

Tom



Thanks Tom,
Practice was okay. The challenge with this group is the huge gap between the best player and the weakest player and planing practices that develop both players.
Last two practices we worked more with offensive plays from the DZ.
---------------------------------------------------------
Kai the talent gap on youth teams is a pretty common problem. I think you have to always do some skill work at the start of practice to develop a good technical foundation and simply ask the more talented players to challenge themselves to do everything at top speed, while the less talented are developing the fundamentals.


Kai

   

Kai K



Registered:: 06/10/09

Posts: 159
By: TomM (offline)  Sunday, August 21 2011 @ 01:46 PM GMT  

The league had it's conditioning camp and now 75 players have been put onto 6 teams. Two teams on each night. They start with a skills practice tonight and then M-T-Sat have scrimmages - 3 a night. On Friday the goalies have a session with goalie coaches.
The three teams can protect up to 8 players and one goalie from last years roster. The remaining player play a full game on Sunday and then the teams draft until they have 15 skaters and 2 goalies.

Paul Pozzi has planned tonights on ice session which is run by neutral coaches while the coaching staffs watch. There will be 3x75 min. on ice sessions tonight with 2 teams in each. They have different coloured jerseys with numbers.

It seems like a well thought out plan to give a fair evaluation for the players.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Monday, August 22 2011 @ 01:26 PM GMT  

Paul planned a good session for evaluation. Lots of competition to identify players.

------------------------
As far as a good chance to show the coaches how you play this tryout is about as fair as you can get. Monday they started a tournament. There are about 12 skaters on each team. There are six teams and each played a game of 2x25min. stop time periods. They do this again tonight and Saturday. Friday is a goalie only practice.

I have to submit between 4 and 8 players who were on last years club as protected players today. I only have 6 returning and they all can play at this level so I will protect everyone.

On Sunday all the non protected players have a game followed by a draft of goalies first and then skaters. I can protect one of the 2 returning goalies. There is a 30 min. window after the draft to make trades. It makes the NHL draft seem simple.

The draft has a rotation of 1-2-3, 2-3-1, 3-1-2 so it is probably an advantage to chose second because then you get the 4th overall. A former NHL D is one of the coaches and his daughter, who is the strongest draft eligible D, is in the draft and is automatically his first pick. Draft order is by picking straws. So it will be a challenge to get the kind of players a coach wants.

At first glance it looks like there are enough good players for two strong teams, we have only two U15 teams supplying 3 U18 teams and some of them end up going to sports schools. So it is critical that the last 3 forwards and the last 2 D can skate and compete hard. So that is what we are looking for. We have 4 F and 2 D returning so must pick 5 F and 4 D as the roster limit is 15 skaters and 2 G.

The top Calgary team finished with a 50% w/l record last season, the other two were under.500. So it will be a challenge. If you have a few scorers and the rest buy into the system and compete hard you can do well.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: Anonymous: unknown ()  Monday, August 22 2011 @ 06:07 PM GMT  

Was a good first tryout last night. This year will be awesome.

By: TomM (offline)  Monday, August 29 2011 @ 03:40 AM GMT  

This draft process is fun for coaches. You have to figure out what your team needs and predict what the other teams need and the connections they have made etc.
Tonight was the prospects game with 30 non protected skaters and 4 Goalies playing a full game.

The draft followed. I won the lottery and had the choice to draft one, two or three. There are 3 Calgary teams.
We could protect up to 8 skaters and one goalie. I have only 6 skaters returning 4F and 2D and protected all of them plus one of the two goalies.

We had a ranking list of F, D and goalies and our game plan was to draft at least 3 scorers who compete hard and they rest had to compete hard and be able to skate.

Draft order was 1-2-3, 2-3-1, 3-1-2. I chose to draft 2nd. The third pick was automatically one of the other coaches daughters, who is the top D in the draft. So I got the 2nd and 3rd picks and chose 2 scorers. I picked another scorer in the 9th spot and then we took 2 D, A scoring forward, 2 D, a checking forward a D a F a D and 1 more F.

I think that works out to 11 F and 7 D. We have to get down to 15 skaters by sept. 11, so 3 skaters have to be send down.

We again won the lottery making it 3 for 3 for the goalie picks. I traded picks so a girl could stay in the league and another team could draft the two goalies they wanted. I think we ended up with the best goalie in the draft and probably the two best goalies.

So we ended up with an older team with some scoring, a lot of competitors, a top set of D and great goaltending. So it is a good start. I have no idea how good the rest of the league but the top Calgary team ended with a 50% w/L record last year. Lets see what this group can do.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Wednesday, August 31 2011 @ 01:47 PM GMT  

We had a 90 minute practice with one goalie and 16 skaters. 1 D, 1G and 1F are playing in a U19 tournament in Vermont.

The goal was to establish some routines. i.e. skating, puck handling that we will do oftern during the year. I also want to create good habits in puck support and the breakout. We did the Murdoch breakouts routine with one goalie ending with shots from the point. We reviewed the breakout principles with a one net transtion game and then finished with a battling transition game.
We play an exhibition game tonight.

Practice Plan - the pdf has the diagrams and video examples.

A2 Skating Warm-up for Edges and Balance
Description:
A2 Formation - Players start at one end and skate to the other end.
- inside edges - out and in using a snowplow.
- inside edges - sculling one leg at a time on the inside edges.
- outside and inside edges - slalom with the skates together and a good knee bend.
- balance and edges - one length of the ice on each leg.
Repeat the same sequence but skate Backward.
mediagallery/media.php?f=0&sort=0&s=20110726073836113

A2 Russian Puck-Handling Warm-up with Shots
From the A2 formation, players skate down the ice in 3 or 4 groups; practice big moves with the puck. One player leave and the next player go when he/she gets past the top of the circle. Finish with a shot from your lane no closer than the hash marks.
. Go one way then the other and do a different skill each time
www.hockeycoachingabcs.com/mediagallery/media.php?s=20090427151438223
B6 Pass and Replace x 3Key Points:
Pass while skating then turn and face the player who is passing to you. Shoot before the hash marks and follow the shot for a rebound.
Description:
A. 1 pass to 2 and follow the pass and turn and face 5 for a pass.
B. 2 pass to 3 and follow the pass.
C. 3 pass to 4 and follow the pass.
D. 4 skate in and shoot-rebound- go to the corner.
hockeycoachingabcs.com/mediagall ... 3082013321

B600 Double Cross and Pass
Key Points:
Make hard passes. Players should face the puck.
Description:
A. Player 1 pass to 2 and cross behind.
B. Player 2 pass to player 3 and exchange lanes crossing with player 1.
C. Player 3 pass across ice to player 4.
D. Player 4 pass across ice to player 1.
E. Players 1 and 2 attack 2-0.
F. Player 3 pass to player 4 who repeat the other way 3-4, 4-1, 1-2, 2-3, attack.
hockeycoachingabcs.com/mediagall ... 3205117104



B5 Full Ice Breakout-One D
Key Points:
Go through the various options of Go, Wheel, Wall, Middle, Counter, Reverse to the Wing.
D always drive skate with the puck between the dots and F's always face the puck and give a target. F on the boards skate facing the puck. Middle F across the ice.
Description:
1. Coach dump the puck into the corner and call the breakout option.
2. D shoulder check and drive skate.
3. Pass to either F.
4. F pass back to the D who passes to the other F.
5. F's attack 2-0 and shoot and rebound.
6. Coach pass to D at the point who skates the puck between the dots and shoot.
7. Forwards screen and tip.
www.hockeycoachingabcs.com/mediagallery/media.php?f=0&sort=0&s=20080720200745971


B5 Breakouts With 2 D
Key Points:
Defense practice D to D passes and communicate with each other.
1. Over - the pass from D1 is made behind the net to D2 on the other side.
2. Reverse - D1 drive skates to the back of the net and bounces it off the boards towards the corner to D2.
Description:
1. Coach shoots the puck in to one side.
2. D1 skates back to forward, shoulder checks and picks up the puck.
3. D2 skates to net front and calls over and moves to the other side for a pass behind.
4. D2 pass to a forwards on the wall or up the middle.
5. F1 pass back to D2 and D2 pass up to F2.
6. F's pass wide and skate to the middle.
7. F's attack 2-0.
8. Coach pass to D2 who followed the attack.
9. D2 shoot while F1 and F2 screen
www.hockeycoachingabcs.com/mediagallery/media.php?f=0&sort=0&s=20080720200746400
DT 400 Game of Support-Regroup-Attack-Defend-Breakout
Key Points:
This is a one puck transiton game. Regroup with support on the strong side boards and in the middle. If the puck goes across ice flow with the play.
Description:
A. Red 1 or 2 get a pass from the blue 3 or 4.
B. Red 1 and 2 attack 2-2 vs blue 1 and 2.
C. Blue 3 and 4 follow the attack to the top of the circles and give passive support (if the puck is carried higher than they are active)
D. The defending 1 or 2 pass to 3 or 4 on transition or after a goal.
E. Blue 3 and 4 regroup with Red 3 and 4 and turn and attack vs the original offensive players Red 3 and 4.
D. Continue this flow.
Options:
Add another regroup or D to D plays like hinge or switch.
www.hockeycoachingabcs.com/mediagallery/media.php?f=0&sort=0&s=20080720200745971

DT400 Transition Game of Low Battles with Point Support
Key Points:
Great game to practice cycling, going to the net, screening, tipping, point shots, shot pass, one timers on offense. On defense you have the low zone coverage and communication skills. As well as individual techniques like sealing the stick to the outside, tying up sticks, boxing out,
switching, all from the defensive side.
Description:
1. One team is lined up behind each faceoff dot. From one to three players leave at a time.
2. The next player in line plays the joker at the point and must pass or shoot within a second. Defenders do not check the joker as he can�t go in and score.
3. The coach dumps the puck in or shoots on net and the teams race for the puck. Whoever gets the puck can shoot right away.
4. When the defending team gets the puck they must pass to their joker at the point to transition to offense.
5. If the puck is shot out of the zone the coach passes to the non offending joker6. Play 20-30� and on the whistle the players pass to the coach and skate hard out of the zone before the coach shoots a new puck in.
www.hockeycoachingabcs.com/mediagallery/media.php?s=20090726102317243


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Thursday, September 01 2011 @ 12:59 PM GMT  

Played our first ex game last night and tied 3-3. We got 28 pim to their 12 pim. The girls played hard and we really back pressured. By the pims we need to work on good technique. We got 1 even, 1 sh and one pp. They got two evern and one pp. I couldn't have asked for more effort. You can coach technique and team play but if the players don't have a high level of compete then it is almost a waste of time.

I talked with a major junior coach that I used to be an asst. for after he had a sub par season compared to how they usually did. I asked him why he thought they underperformed. He said 'I made the mistake of recruiting Talent over Character.' He chose character the next two years and was again one of the top teams in the WHL and now he is in the NHL.

I still 1 G, 1D and one F playing in a U19 tournament in Vermont and that gives a chance for more ice time for everyone. We still have to declare 3 players as affiliates and they will either be picked up by other teams or go to the A league.

Tonight we have the last ice time before the long weekend. I have asked one of my former WWHL goalies if she will come to give us two tenders. I am waiting to hear back. I am also going to ask one of the parents, who I tried to recruit when I was coaching college men many years ago if he can come on the ice with me. Two of my asst. are working and one is flying back from Finland with Team Canada today. So it will be nice if he can help.

I can plan my practice when I get the answers. Is it a practice with one coach and one goalie, 2 and 1 or 2 and 2. It changes what we can do.
--------------------
PS, The former goalie emailed back and said that she would love to come but she is in Holland at the moment and will be there for a year. So one goalie.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Friday, September 02 2011 @ 12:48 PM GMT  

Theme of the practice was to improve puck handling technique, man to man coverage, recognition of the situation, D to D hinge, regroup and compete. I made up two new transition games DT400 which is a game in one end with extra players waiting for a pass.One game was to put the regroup and hinge into a game situation and the other was to vary the game play situation between 1-1 to 3-3. The coach told the next group how many would attack 1, 2 or 3 and defenders have to recognize and communicate. I have attached the practice plan as well as a pdf of the hinge practice with video links to Detroit and Swedes practicing the D to D.
----------------------------------------------------------

A2 Skating Warm up-Edges and Balance Position With a Puck

A200 Puck Handling with a Shot

T B6 D to D Hinge and Switch

B6 3-0 Weave With 2 D Regroup D Hinge then Pass Middle D Join the Rush and Takes the Shot

DT400 Support-Regroup-Hinge-Attack-Defend

D400 - 3 on 3 Quick Transition Game

DT400 With Varying Situations 1-1 to 3-3


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Monday, September 05 2011 @ 12:45 PM GMT  

I have been posting some of my practices here but I am sure the coaches that use this site would like to see what coaches from other countries or coaches with different philosophies are doing.

I have my opinion on how practices should be run and the method has worked for me but maybe I am completely wrong and other activities work much better.

Lets share ideas so we can all learn.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: DaveM (offline)  Tuesday, September 06 2011 @ 01:08 AM GMT  

Tom - Not quite into the hockey season yet, but here is the plan I wrote for day one of tryouts. I expect the next few days will be similar, just changing the games, with the final day being just a scrimmage. We'll have just over 30 at tryouts and keep 25 - 28, depending on talent range, for two teams when we're all done. We have a short pre-season, and since most of these guys will be around when we're don it's fairly heavy on conditioning.

Anyone is welcome to ask questions or give feedback, and I can put things into diagrams if it's helpful.

Thanks,
Dave
----------------------------------------
Dave, thanks for sharing. This league I am coaching in starts so early. First game on the 17th. Kid's can't play the fall school sports anymore because the season is so long. I got the schedule and found out we play every Sunday morning or early afternoon. I will miss my 11:15 Sunday hockey. That doesn't make me happy but I guess in a league with so much travelling you have to play early in the day so the players can get back home. Such is life.
We have to make decisions on the 2 players to put on waivers tonight and then see if we want to pick up someone from one of the other teams. We got the forwards and G we wanted in the draft but are a little thin in the back end right now.

   

DaveM



Registered:: 08/24/09

Posts: 79
By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, September 06 2011 @ 06:27 PM GMT  

This morning I arranged for off ice sessions every Wed. evening. We will have a 4 week rotation.
Wk 1 - Ball hockey rink for team play, off ice skills and other activities.
Wk 2 - Spin class.
Wk 3 - Plyometrics.
Wk 4 - Spin class.

I also arranged for 2 of my practices this month to be team play scrimmages with the other 2 Calgary teams. We will take turns having 5 min power plays 5-4, 4-3, 5-3, 4-4, 5-5, 6-5. I find this a great way to review team play. i.e. we have a 5 min 5 on 4 then the players come to the bench for 3 min. to go over 4 on 5 and they have a 5 min. 5 on 4. So coaching between each situation. I hope they will agree to do this all season.

Tonight we will do skills for about 30 min. and then focus on the individual skill of stick on the ice and stick on the puck. We will play some situations in a flow contest and then we will go over defensive zone coverage and play a transition game to reinforce the d support. A little speed-agility skating and finish with rebound.

I put 3 players on the waiver wire this morning and am not interested in the other teams waived players unless there are some changes. I have to notify these players that they are now affiliate players only.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Thursday, September 08 2011 @ 12:23 PM GMT  

Today we have a 2.75 hr time slot but it is at 4 pm and too early to arrange an ex game. We will start 30 minutes late to make it easier for the players to get there from school.

We sent in our roster and picked the 15 best skaters and declared 3 D as affiliates. We have to convert 2 F to D and they practiced D on Tuesday.

I will use the long practice to go over the power play and penalty kill.

We will start with the overload power play with a low cycle. When the player attacks the seam between the F and the D and then read the options.

1. Go through and score or pass to the F on the weak side or the middle D coming in back door.
2. If the D pressures then the low player supporting on the goal line is open.
3. If the F pressures then the point is open.
4. I want the weak side D to be active and go back door when the F is walking the seam and go to the mid slot when the puck is passed to the F below the goal line. (also sets up the 1-3-1 later)

This is the starting point for our power play and if I can get all of the players to understand attacking the seam and always moving when they get the puck we have the base for other options.. i.e. rotationg into a 1-3-1 diamond.

Penalty kill. We will pressure all over the ice.
1. Skate in straight lines with shin pads in front of the shot. The line is always from the net out. So out and back and not sideways.
2. Stick on the puck and in passing lanes.
3. Back into support position when the puck is passed away.
4. Closest player pressure while the others rotate in a box vs 2 pointmen and a diamond vs pointman in the mid point.

Killing 2 short we have an inverted triangle vs a pp with 2 pointmen and a regular triangle vs a player at the middle point. We keep it tight and only pressure when the puck is fumbled or loose.

I like to follow the same principle in pk as in even strength with the forecheck and pressure from the inside to the outside in a tandem and back pressure the puck carrier. No swing and switch.

Following practice we will have a parent meeting. I will speak and answer questions the first half hour and then the team manager will take care of the volunteer and financial items.

On Sunday we will have a team picnic. The weather has been in the high 20 C (80's F) this week and is supposed to be nice on the weekend. I want the players to prepare a meal together, clean up and then create a Team Covenant that will be the template for decisions this year. I will meet with a few veterans to show them some examples. (Bob Murdoch gives a great talk in the video section and explains the purpose of the Team Covenant). I wanted to take them to a hostel for an overnight to create the covenant (the last two years I coached college we went to Mosquito Creek Hostel near Lake Louise and the next year to a hostel near the ocean in Vancouver) but there is no time. We play Saturday, practice Sunday and the season starts next weekend.

Yesterday I emailed the players and asked them to send me an email about themselves, their goals for the season, hobbies etc., so I can get to know them better. I got 4 this morning and hope to get the rest in the next few days.

So a coach has a lot of things to do at the start of the season.

We don't have enough players like in college or pro to practice at both ends vs opposition and that is why I have arranged specialty team scrimmages with other teams. The core covenant pdf is an example from one of Murdochs teams.
-------------------------
Very long practice. We started 30 minutes later to make it easier for players to drive there from school but it was still 2.25 hr. We accomplished all but the 2 short pk. Some of the D had a really hard time making themselves pressure instead of standing in front of the net. It is a work in progress and I imaging it will be ugly for awhile.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Friday, September 09 2011 @ 12:29 PM GMT  

With rosters less than 20 skaters it is difficult to practice team play. This is a rotation that allows reps with full lines. I have each unit in a different colour. I tell the F's the order they sit out. i.e. lw, rw, c. and the goalies can rotate each time or wait until every line has had a pp and then rotate. If you do full ice with less than 4 units the units are seldom together and there aren't enough players to have 10 at each end like you would in pro or college.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
TD400 Specialty Team Scrimmage
Key Points:
Rotation is Attack-Defend-Rest. Number the players so they know when to not defend. In even numbered situations you can require the defenders to breakout into the neutral zone before passing.
Description:
1. Power play attack vs 2 Fand 2 D.
2. Defenders ice the puck and rest.
3. Group waithing at far blue attack.
4. Original attackers now defend 1 short.
5. Goalies rotate in.
6. Create any situation by changing the number of attackers or defenders.
7. Even strength can also be practiced.
*Option is to have waiting players breakout from behind the goal line and do a pk forecheck.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Sunday, September 11 2011 @ 12:20 PM GMT  

Last night we had a ex game and the chance to work our aggressive 2-1-2 with a weak side pinch. We created pressure all over the ice and won 4-2 giving up a few breakaways when our converted F's playing D gambled but out goalie stopped two of the three. They scored a really nice goal with a quick low pass, one touch in front and in.
We had them hemmed intheir zone most of the game because of the pressure and could have scored more on all of the loose pucks in their crease.
Another practice today where we will introduce the 2 short pp and pk and walk thru the forecheck. After they will have a picnic and meet to develop a ten point Team Covenant.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Monday, September 12 2011 @ 12:49 PM GMT  

We worked on the TSUNAMI 2-1-2 forecheck with a pinch on the wide side. It is very aggressive and the pinching D stays low and joins the cycle while the original #3 covers the weak side point and the other D slide over and fills the point for the pinch original weak side D.

On the 2 short pk we practiced the rotation vs a pp with 2 on the point.

The PDF has the practice with diagrams.

It would be nice to see other coaches pracitice plans or read comments about this practice.
----------------------------------

We start our season this weekend. I just got an email from the father of my captain who is a good puck moving defenseman. She just got her blood test back and she has mono and can't play for an undisclosed amount of time. That gives us 5 D and 9 F.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, September 20 2011 @ 12:57 PM GMT  

We started with a 3-2 win and a 3-2 loss. In the second game the ref called a penalty every time someone from either team competed hard for the puck so 50 minutes were specialty teams. It was 0-0 after two. We outshot them 20-7 in the third but they got 3. He called a goalie interference call on us with 2 min. to go and they scored.

Last night we had a specialty team practice with the team we played on Sunday. It was really beneficial for both teams.

Format.
10 min. warm up
12 min. - 4-5
12 min. - 5-4
12 min. - 3-5
12 min. - 5-3
12 min. - 5-5

The clock was reset and started after each segment and we had 3 min. to meet with the team to go over the systems for each situation. The goals were put up on the score clock to add competition. It was our ice time and they will reciprocate. We will do the same thing with the other Calgary team at the end of the month. I am hoping we can do this once a month with each team and it will help with the players understanding and give each team two more practices each month.

If you can find another team to do this with it really helps. I find that the team gets too tired practicing it alone. Especially minor hockey teams who don't have 12 F and 8 D.

On their pp's they use an umbrella that focuses on one timers by the week side high player or else that player comes in back door. We used an overload on the 5-4 and a spread on the 5-3. Both teams produced lots of scoring chances and it ended up 4-4.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Thursday, September 22 2011 @ 01:06 PM GMT  

Wed. night is our off ice training night and we did spin class. The leader was Elaine a trathalon and ultra marathon athlete who is married to a former NHLer and current asst. coach. She has boy's playing NCAA hockey and one at an NHL training camp and her daughters are also elite athletes. So a real role model for the girl's.

The varied between hills, speed, recovery for 60' and the did 15 ' of core and stretching.

We plan on doing spin twice a month, plyo's once and to use the court once a month for team play and skills.

They gave us more ice yesterday and a lot of it is on Wed. so I will reschedule the dryland for Monday which is open.

I explained to Elaine how the talent pool is a little thin with having 3 AAA teams in Calgary and that we need to play a real up tempo game to be successful because if we just match skill with skill some teams are a lot deeper in talent.

I had to ask two of my better veteran forwards to play D because there just aren't enough defensemen that can play at this level. We are ok at forward and in the net. So it is a project in the back end as one of our top D has mono and two are F's learning the position.

On-ice practice tonight will focus on doing things quickly and everyone taking defensive reps. We need tighter gaps and D side. They have to play tight gaps in practice or they never will in a game.

We have covered almost all of the team play situations except the 6-5,

We usually get two weeks of two practices and two of 3. So we will rotate each through the themmes.
1-individual offensive skills - the first 30 min. of each practice.
2-team offensive skills.
3-individual defensive skills.
4-team defensive skills.

We can have more on ice if the other two coaches agree to sharing ice for team play practice like we did on Monday. I hope they do. there is one other team close to the city that I will also ask.

I guess if they knew everything then they wouldn't need a coach.

On Sat. we play road game vs a team that outshot the team we lost 3-2 to on Sunday 50-20 but lost the game. It will be a real test as last year they were the division champs and have 14 returning players. It will show us where we are.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Friday, September 23 2011 @ 02:05 PM GMT  

September 22 Practice

Goals of Practice
Tight gaps on 1-1
Close puck support
Transition from offense to defense
Pick up sticks and box out in the slot
Quickly state to open ice with the puck
Make the easy quick play
Identify coverage
Play the game while skating.


A200
Skating edges warm up with a puck. Forward then backward.

-snowplow
-one foot stroking at a time
-both blades inside edges
-two foot slalom
-one leg only

B6 Shoot from Three Lanes – Sequence One

3 players leave and skate-shoot-rebound-rebound for the next shooter.

Pattern a. around circle b. around near face off dot c. around far dot.

B6- 3 shots-3 pass 3-zig zag 3 lane shots

- Leave about 3” apart so the goalie has time to get set.
- Rebound for the next shooter.

A300 - Quick strides with the puck

Skate around the outside with a puck and on the whistle turn toward the boards and take three quick strides then slow up. Repeat on whistle always turning toward the boards.
“Fast Feet are Happy Feet.”

D4 – Game at each end.

Rule – you can’t pass until you have taken at least 3 strides with the puck.

Divide the team into 4 groups of 4. Defenders must clear the zone and get onside before attacking.
Play 2 games of 6 minutes each.

B500 Skill Circuit
Defense go to one end with defense coach and work on tight gaps.

Forwards in middle working on saucer pass and stickhandling moves and fakes.

Goalies work on rebound control with goalie coach.

D100 Puck Support Game with 2” Rule

4 on 4 full ice with the rule you can ‘only handle the puck for 2”.

Whistle every 60” and pass back to the goalie then change.

DT 100 Backchecking Game of 2-2

Play 2-2 with the defending team getting passive support at the top of the circles.

On a frozen puck, goal or turnover pass to the supporting players who attack the other way.

ORIGINAL ATTACKERS MUST BACKCHECK

Stress attacking quickly while the back checkers must identify who they cover and tie up their sticks-box out-then look for loose pucks.

Defenders team mates follow the play to attack the other way.

Quick game and the players must be alert and hustle.

E1 Shootout with Two Shots

Score 2 and 0 laps.
Score 1 and 1 lap.
Score 0 and 2 laps.

End practice with all the players lying down facing the middle dot sticks out. Finish with a cheer and then everyone pick up 2 or 3 pucks and put them in the puck bag. (no rookie garbage of picking up the pucks)


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Monday, September 26 2011 @ 03:43 PM GMT  

We split two games on the weekend losing 0-5 to last years top team. Shots were 29-30. They have almost the entire team back and play the game very well with good habits and lots of speed on transition. It is where we are trying to get to. The speed intimidated us the first period and they got 3 and the last two periods were fairly even but they scored one in each and we didn't finish on our chances.

The second game was vs a team with similar skill to us and we won 4-1 and the shots were 41-19. We had a good first, even in the second and we dominated the third.

The weekend showed that we really need to skate to open ice with the puck and move the puck away from pressure. We also need to learn not to panic but learn to manage the puck and eliminate give aways. We backcheck really hard but have to pick up someone when we get back and not all focus on the puck.

Pretty good weekend for this time of year. Our next two weekends we play the top team again.

Sept. 16 Practice
Divide into two groups.

Goals:
Puck Handling - Shooting - Passing
Angling - tight gaps - reading coverage
Goalies rebound control

A200 - Edges warm up with a puck going one way with each exercise.

A200 - One group in one direction and finish with a shot and the other group other way. Change directions. Coach lead moves to practice.

B6 Small Horseshoe 1-0, 2-0, 3-0

D200 Gap control angling game

D200 Angling game

DT200 King's Score Game

DT200 Two Net Transition Outnumber Game

E1 Rebound at one end.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
By: TomM (offline)  Tuesday, September 27 2011 @ 12:52 PM GMT  

The practice I posted went very well. We had 13 skaters and 2 goalies. Two players were sick, one emailed and the other got to the rink but was too sick to go on the ice.

I added one more timing drill that I will attach here and changed the rules in the games a bit.

Games.
Players were in two groups and 7 and 6.
We played cross ice.

In all of the games I had the team in possession of the puck pass to their teammates who waited at the blue line to come on, instead of starting with a new puck. This is much more realistic and we only had one puck. If they made a bad pass out of the zone they had to got and get it. No short cuts.

We kept score and the team that lost the 4 game tournament had to skate the five circles.

After reading Deans posting on Mike Johnston moving from activity to activity I decided to show all of the drills at once and we simply moved from one to the other. I name them and once the players know them we don't need to go to the board but it is early in the season and most of the things are new. After the warm up skill drills section I brought them in for a drink and showed them all 4 games and they already know the rebound game, so we spent about 3 min. total at the board.

They are getting a lot better at the edges warm up and most can now skate the entire length of the ice on one leg both forward and back. They carried pucks yesterday and that make it a lot more difficult. I want to have them supply ten minutes of music and we can go through the edges and Russian big moves routines to their Rap songs.


'The Game is the Greatest Coach'
'Enjoy the Game'
   

TomM



Registered:: 06/25/08

Posts: 2947
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