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Drill of the Week: Neutral Zone Surfer

By Minnesota Hockey & CoachThem, 11/02/21, 10:00AM CDT



Minnesota Hockey ADM instructor Erik Anderson shares a defensive skill drill designed to emphasize stick position and angling concepts.


  • Line of X's at top of the circle. Line of O's at center ice dot.
  • On a whistle, O skates puck around the cone tries to beat the angler outside and attack the net. 
  • The X skates toward the O, with a good stick, to take away the inside of the rink and forces the O to the outside.
  • The X should angle the O into the boards and can finish the angle with a "hip on hands" check. 
  • Progression: For the first few reps, O's cannot cut back to the middle. Once the X's have some confidence in the concept, you can allow the O's to cut back if the X has a poor stick or angle. 


  • X should start with a stick to the middle to take away the "good ice" and passing lanes.
  • X should initially stay a little behind the O to discourage a cutback and protect the middle of the ice.

Find this drill in the Minnesota Hockey Drill Share Group on CoachThem.

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