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Shinny Hockey Rules

Game Strategy

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Making the disorganized seem organized...

Item Description
Lineups, to 5 man. 3man:Go 3 on 3 with periodic water breaks.   4man:Go 4 on 4 with periodic water breaks.  5man: Early season typically 4 on 4 rotating one spare, else go 5 on 5, with periodic water breaks.
Lineups, over 5 man 6 or7 man: Rotate spares,     8 man: Rotate 3Def and 5Forwards  , 9man:Typically rotate 3Def + 2forward lines,    10man: 2 sets of Def & 2 forward lines.  More than 10: This sucks, you work it out…
Substitutions: 1 spare Take turns coming off,  try to take even length shifts, typically 1 minute on the bench=4 minutes on the ice.  In this case, its not considered a bad thing if one or two players who are in good shape skip their turn off now and then to give the others a longer breather.
Substitutions: 2 spares Special case: if two playerscome off the ice at the same time, the first to set foot off the ice must be the first to go back onto the ice, unless a special agreement is made in advance.
Substitutions: 3 spares Two possibilities, that should be agreed to before the game: 1. Take turns coming off, rotate through the bench regardless of position.   2. Split the bench into 1 spare defensemen, 2 spare forwards, then rotate through as players come off.  Skipping a turn off the ice in this case can be considered bad manners depending on what physical shape the other players are in.
Substitutions: over 3 spares This is a superset of 3 spares, and can be done according to agreement by the players before the game. Skipping a turn off the ice in this case is considered hogging ice time and is clearly bad manners.
No Goalie Nothing screws up the flow and positional play aspect of a game more than missing goalies. Three strategies are commonly used (in order of decreasing similarity to real hockey):  1.Tip the net over to expose the top surface. A goal only counts if you hit the mesh on the face, no metal.  2.Tie up a spare jersey across the front of the open net as a target. A goal counts only if you hit it. 3.Reverse the net. A goal only counts if you bank it off the backboard into the net.   In all these cases, if there is one goalie then switch ends at half time to make it fair.  The idea I like (although nobody dares to use it) is to make the other team use your goalie if they show up without one...At least your team gets to play real hockey then!
On-ice communication Successful teams always communicate on the ice.  1.Don't be afraid to call for the puck, by yelling or by slapping your stick on the ice. This really helps the 'heads down' players find you.  2. Don't pass the puck to a guy who isn't looking or has his back to you and then hope he gets the pass after call out HIS name.
Psych outs Doesn't really apply in Shinny. If you are playing a real 'team' that has played together however, you can try to psych them out to gain some (short term) advantage, typically if your opponents don't know you and think that you are a team. Techniques include 1.By leaking the word out before the game that you've got some 'former Pros' on your team. 2.By looking good as a team in the warmup, before they find out how you REALLY play.  The corollary to all this is to be carefull of getting psyched out by the looks of the opponents uniforms, warmup prowess or youthfull appearance.
Tournament hockey This could be a book on its own...Eventually, most pickup hockey players get roped into playing in a tournament.  Tournament hockey differs widely from the usual shinny game in many respects: 1.Referees are watching you, so the self policing aspect of the game rules goes out the window.  2.Maybe fans/family are watching you, so you tend to become overly self aware.  3.The game is faster, so you have little time to carry the puck and you get out of breath much quicker, 5.You have to deal with faceoffs, which you have never practiced playing shinny.  6.You usually change as a line, but more often,  keep your eye on the guy on the line before yours.  7.Those 'cute' moves that worked before when the game was slower seem to fall apart…

--- Isn't writing the unwriten rules of shinny hockey against the rules??? ---