Monday, April 6, 2009

Should I Take A Face Off With a Long Pole? How Long Should It Be?

Question: You see more and more faceoff specialists using long poles. It would seem to
me that a longer shaft has some leverage advantages but that 60 inches may
be longer than needed.

What do you think the best pole length for faceoffs is? Would it make sense
to use a goalie length pole, i.e. 40 inches, or to cut down a long pole to say 5
inches for face offs?

Answer: Hey there Adam. What your seeing is actually a trend with teams who do not have a competitive face off guy. What they will do is put a long pole on the face offs so that if they lose the face off they have a pole on the ball carrier right away. They will shut off the wings and let the pole try and strip the ball carrier who is usually the face off guy. Most face off guys are good at face offs and aren't the best at protecting the stick. So the hope is that the pole can strip the face off guy after he gets possession.

So in fact a pole is not an advantageous tool for winning face offs off the ground. It is heavier and thus is harder to clamp on the face off. A shorter stick will always be quicker than a long pole when the talents of the two face off guys are the same. The advantage comes after the other guy wins the face off.

Make sense? Let me know if you need anything else.

Jonathan -

1 comment:

hunterk2015 said...

I respectfully disagree with Jonathan. I am a Fogo LSM and I personally believe that if you are a long pole and want to take face-off, then go for it. The reason most kids are taking face-off with a long pole is too become a specialist. A LSM is a specialty and will grant you access to higher teams, while the same goes for Fogos. So if you are excellent at both, then your bound for a great team. And it's not because they can be right on the ball handler, it's because they are good at face0-offs. Look at Duke's C.J. Costabile. He won the National Championship with his face-off ability.