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Coaching Drills & Advice: Why Aren't I the Best Goalie

Man, I can't understand why no one around here gives me the credit I deserve. I'm a better goalie than anyone else in the league, even if my stats don't show it. I mean, after all, my defense is always screwing up on me so I get faced with impossible save opportunities. They screen me, they don't clear away my rebounds and don't listen to me when I complain about the job they are doing.

I heard some of my teammates and a coach questioning my work ethic in practice. I'm a game goalie and I need to conserve my energy in practice. Why should I knock myself out to stop the puck in practice? I know I can turn on my goaltending in the big games when I need to. If I do give up some goals in practice, it's usually someone else's mistake that causes me to let them in. I know I'm great so why worry?

I hate playing against the weaker teams in the league. It's boring to stand around while the other goalie gets shelled. I always seem to have some funny goals go in when I play those lousy teams. They don't shoot the puck like the better players and I get caught off-guard. My teammates look at me strangely when the puck goes in, but, it's not my fault the other team can't shoot the puck like real hockey players. I would have stopped the puck if the shots were harder or went where I expected them to go.

I hate the training stuff that the coach makes me do on and off the ice. Those sprints make me vomit. The rest of the players don't have all of my equipment on and I bet they'd throw up too if they had to skate with goalie pads on. They look at me like I'm out of shape, but, that can't be true. Even though I watch alot of TV and eat fast food and chips, I practice several times a week to stay in shape. Why should I weight train, run, or do pylometrics? I'm a goalie, so what does that stuff have to do with stopping the puck? I should be resting and saving myself for games. The extra weight I carry around my stomach is good for softening up the puck.

I can't understand why my teammates don't consider me a leader. I'm the first one to let them know what they did wrong on the ice. I know I have a sarcastic wit but I don't get how they take what I say and twist it around to make me the bad guy. Hey, I call'em as I see 'em. I hate when they make me look bad on the ice so I need to set them straight.

Coach says I need to control my rebounds and stay out on the angles more. What does he know? If he taught the defensemen better, they would be in position to clear away the rebounds. I can't say out on the angle since the forwards don't backcheck and I can't afford to come out too far. Who cares what my angles look like as long as I stop the puck. If I make the save, it's up to my teammates to get the rebound under control. My job is to stop the puck, period.

I'm a high school senior and I don't know why the scouts are drooling over the goalies that are ahead of me in the stats. They're lucky that they play behind good defenses. It's obvious to me that I'm better than everyone yet no one has offered me a full scholarship.

The scouts are hanging around a couple of goalies I play against who are fitness freaks and practice nuts. They're always hanging out in the gym and they practice on the ice all the time. What brown-noses! Even their grades are A's. I do enough to get by, after all, hockey is my ticket to college, not academics.

TRANSLATION: The thoughts of this goalie are terribly distorted. He thinks the world owes him a favor. He won't take responsibility for his own actions and mistakes. He doesn't realize that coaches, teammates, and scouts see him as a loser. What an insult it is to his teammates that he is out of shape. Why should the team bust their butts to work hard only to have a lazy, overweight goalie blow the game? The only way to gain respect and admiration is to earn it the old-fashioned way - effort. Do you have what it takes to be a great goalie?

This article was contributed by Fred Quistgard of Quistgard Goalie Training

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