We have all been on both ends of a close hockey game. When we are on the not so fun side, we can find ourselves obsessing about that hit post, the shot that flew over the net, that missed by an inch. When we win the game, all of those moments fade to the wayside. Scoring more goals doesn’t happen overnight. Alex Ovechkin didn’t snipe on the power play on his first day of practice. He had to learn where to shoot the puck, where the higher percentages and harder saves for goalies are in the net.

Having the ability to pick the smallest opening, to see the spot and fling the puck behind the netminder is a special talent that requires practice with purpose to learn.

There are five spots that have a higher percentage for scoring goals. Being able to find them quickly and effectively will increase the chances astronomically to score! Most times you need to shoot the puck where it is hardest for the goalie to save. No matter where you are on the ice, if you can pinpoint a shot with accuracy, you have a much higher chance of scoring a goal and being successful.

Right above the pads – When a goalie drops down into their butterfly, there is an opening about 12-18 inches off the ice on either side of the net.

5-hole – Right when the goalie goes into the butterfly, they expose a spot between their legs, called the five-hole. This isn’t open very long, so you’ll have to be fast!

Top corners, stick and glove-side high – Right under the pipes, in the corners of the net. These are the glory shots, they are a tough spot to hit, but it is a great feeling when you do. It has a ton of names, like: where mama hides the cookies, top cheese, bar south, top shelf.

When you know where to shoot, you can score on anyone.

How to Become a Sniper

Like anything else, becoming a true sniper and picking out the corners or 5-hole take practice. Since you probably don’t have a goalie in full pads at your disposal 24/7 the next best way to sharpen your shooting skills are with a Shooting Tarp. Instead of shooting at an empty net, a Shooting Tarp helps you pick out the best spots to score goals. The tarp has a picture of a regulation net and a goalie. There are holes to shoot for positioned in the 5 best goal scoring spots.

February 20, 2021 — Amy Budde

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