I took some time this weekend to enjoy the Dartmouth-Cornell men's lacrosse game, in which the Big Red edged the Big Green, 8-7. This was the first game I have seen in over a decade, and I confess that I couldn't figure it out. It seemed like Cornell was playing a different sport than Dartmouth was.
Hockey, I understand quite well, after 20 years of watching it closely. It basically comes down to three principles:
- Failure to clear the puck out of your defensive zone is the source of all bad hockey. (This means that the entire team, including the forwards, must work as hard as possible to get the puck across the blue line.)
- If there is a 2-on-1, and you are the 1, prevent the pass not the shot. (The goalie has to play the opponent with the puck no matter what, so the defender's primary objective should be to make sure he doesn't also have to worry about a pass to the opponent without the puck.)
- Favorable rebounds far outnumber perfect passes. (The best opportunities arise when the puck is near the net, so when in doubt, shoot.)
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