How to Create Offense Using the Width & Depth of the Offensive Zone


We’ve all heard that hockey is a game of time and space. Strong offensive teams deploy tactics that create time and space while strong defensive teams deploy tactics to take away an opponent’s time and space.

Using the width and depth of the Offensive Zone is an offensive tactic to achieve the following key objectives:

  1. Maintain puck possession and control in the zone
  2. Create time and space for the player with the puck and players without the puck
  3. Require defenders to move their feet and increase their work rate defending
  4. Open up seams and lanes to the net
  5. Create passing and shooting lanes
  6. Use your teams speed and skills in the zone to create scoring chances
  7. Engage the D pairing in the offensive zone to support the puck

This short video clip is from a recent game between the Bruins and the Devils. The Bruins demonstrate their ability to achieve some of the above objectives by using the width and depth of the offensive zone that results in them scoring a nice goal.

Offensively you want to create time and space with the puck to take advantage of the ice surface and your players’ skills and abilities. Encourage young players (forwards and defensemen) to move their feet and avoid being stationary in the offensive zone.

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Mike Coldham

Mike has over 25 years of coaching experience as a Technical Mentor Coach of people in Business and Sports. Now retired after 35 years of public service, Mike created the TLPF website to support the development of competitive minor hockey players. Mike works with competitive hockey players to help them learn how to play faster which requires tactical knowledge and skills.

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