There is no doubt that hockey is one of the most challenging sports to play. In hockey, each position has its own set of challenges and requirements. There is one question that every hockey fans ask what position in hockey is the hardest to play?
In ice hockey, the goaltender position is the hardest to perform. Being a hockey goaltender, one needs a long time to learn and practice, extreme mental taxing, and high physical abilities and efforts. Goaltenders are the main component in a team’s success and loss. That’s why goalies need to be at their best every night to get a team’s victory.
Let’s dig out more with logic and figure out how and why goaltender is the most challenging position in hockey. Moreover, what is the responsibility of a goalie in a hockey match for the team’s victory?
Table of Contents
Goalies train the most to get the skills required
The players of the ice hockey matches are drafted into the team at 18, but most likely, only 6 to 12 players can play in the upcoming games. The remaining selected players need further training to debut in the National Hockey League for a few years. The players who get to play are usually the defensemen or the forward players.
Comparatively, the players need at least two to three years of professional training. But the goalies need to train far more than others. Players need at least six to eight years of training to be selected as team goalies. And it is also tough to predict at the time of selection of a player whether he will be able to train as a goalie in the future.
Goalies need a high level of concentration
It was stated in an interview by President Brendan Shanahan of Maple Leaf that an ice hockey player needs the concretion of a neurology surgeon to play in the ice rink. The properties in a player that lead him to become a goalie are his agility, sharp reflexes, less response time, great physical shape, and highly strategic mindset.
All the above traits need time to develop in a human being. Thus goalies need comparatively high levels o concentration to play a fantastic game.
Moreover, goalies must know the skill of reading the game. Like how the puck will be shot in the goalie’s net, how will the team member pass the puck, and how is the overall game turning?
All these questions need to be inserted into his head to develop a quick response to stop the goal of the opposite team or to score a point for his team. Hence, we can analyze that the goalie’s position is the hardest in ice hockey games.
The goalie is a position that needs the most physical work
It was stated in an interview by President Brendan Shanahan of Maple Leaf that an ice hockey player needs the physical strength of a soccer player and the stamina of a marathon runner to play in the ice rink.
Hence, the goalie’s position needs more physical work than the forward players and defensemen. Generally, if the players are in good physical shape, they will then play all 85 matches of the National Hockey League. But the goalie’s position is the most demanding regarding physical work, and the highly fit goalies play at most 60 to 65 matches in one yearly session.
The reasons for the fact that goalies need to put more physical effort during the game are; firstly, the goalies do not take breaks during the match and play nonstop except for the period of intermissions.
Secondly, they wear heavy gear for protection from injuries. The weight of the equipment makes them feel tired even when standing still.
Thirdly, the goalies need to play every night for the games; most of the team schedules the play that avoids the consecutive performance of the goalies, but that does not apply every time. Lastly, as discussed in the beginning, goalies need strong stamina to carry out their goalkeeping responsibility.
The goalie is caught off guard, and the games are lost
The goalie carries the burden of winning and loss of the team. They are not given any slight chance of any error or mistake. If the goalie in the crease is not good at his job, he will be exposed to everyone in the rink in no time, and his team will lose the game very effortlessly.
There is a chance when the luck is not on the goalies’ side, but if he is a veteran in his job, he will turn the tables, and with the support of his team member, the game will be a win.
As well as, if the goalies are not playing well, then it is evident that his team will lose. All the trash falls on the goalie’s position because a defenseman and a scored can get help from his members, but goalies can seek no help from anyone in the game. Thus, a goalie’s performance will decide a team’s winning and losing.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the easiest position in ice hockey?
‘Winger’ is the easiest position in ice hockey as it needs fewer additional skills than other positions. Right-handed players play as right-wing, and left-handed players play as left-wing.
Which position takes the most assists?
‘Centers’ are players who take the most assists as they are considered the primary playmakers of a team.
What is the fastest position in ice hockey?
Forward is the fastest position in hockey, being the offensive side of a team. They have the primary responsibility of taking targeted shots and scoring goals.
To sum it up, in hockey, the goalie’s position is the hardest of all players’ positions. He must be trained very well, have significantly appealing reflexes, and have firm control of his mind to make the game on his side. This blog has mentioned those facts about the position of a goalie that seems difficult to interpret to the expected audience. We hope you will lie in this piece of writing and will appreciate us in the comments then.