From time to time you need to run 1v1 drills to work on those skills. Every player needs to know how to defend the 1v1 and how to create offense during the 1v1. Here is a selection of drills that I use throughout the course of the year to work on the 1v1 skills. As I stated in a prior post, I don’t allow my forwards to use the move where they put the puck between a defenders legs and try to go around him to pick it up again. In these drills I want my forwards to work on power moves to either the inside or the outside and to also use the defender as a screen and shoot through their legs. I also insist that they continue to work hard to the front of the net and look for rebounds. For the defensemen I want them to try and keep the rush to the outside whenever possible and to concentrate on the chest of the offensive player. My philosophy on defending the 1v1 is that the defensive player’s job is to ride the offensive player to the outside or off the puck and the backchecker should be there to pick up any loose pucks. Too often you see the defender look down at the puck to try and make a play and the offensive player goes right around him because of that look down. Keep your eyes on the chest and feel for the puck with your stick.
The one downside to running 1v1 drills is it causes a lot of standing around because only two players are working at the same time or four if you go in both directions, so be sure to make the drills run quickly and have the players clear the front of the net as soon as they are finished. I hope you find these drills helpful.