A defenseman is a position in hockey. Unlike the goalie and wingers, the defenseman is a key player in a team's ability to block goals and apply pressure in the defensive zone. It is up to the defensemen to help the goalie and prevent shots on goal.
Roles and Responsibilities
The defensemen are responsible for neutralizing offensive players in the defensive zone. They play a strong defensive game and play a major role in blocking shots and protecting the goalie. Defensemen can also play an offensive role in the attacking zone, but usually remain close to the neutral zone in case the puck changes possession.
Defensemen have a job of supporting the goalie by stopping the puck from entering the net, and intercepting the puck from opposing players and forcing a turnover.
Types of Defensemen
There are three main types of defensemen in the modern game of hockey:
These defensemen are specialized at playing a particularly strong defensive game. While these defensemen typically don't score very often, they play a pivotal role in shutting down opposing teams' forwards.
Offensive defensemen play a more aggressive style of play. Rather than playing a safe defensive game, offensive defensemen will typically join in on offensive rushes and try to generate scoring chances in the attacking zone.
Two-way defensemen are the complete package. Not only do they play well offensively, but they play well defensively as well. They are the most versatile breed of defensemen.
The capable defenseman is constantly moving with the puck on the ice. If the puck is far from the defensive zone, the defenseman will move closer to the neutral zone and attacking zone. A good defenseman anticipates the movement of the puck on the ice and uses his whole body to block a shot on goal.
Defensemen are defined by stats such as Goals (G), Assists (A), and Shots on Goal (S).
Top NHL Defensemen
The following lists some of the top defensemen in the National Hockey League by team:
|Ray Bourque||Boston Bruins|
|Nicklas Lidstrom||Detroit Red Wings|
|Brian Leetch||New York Rangers|
|Brent Burns||San Jose Sharks|
|Drew Doughty||Los Angeles Kings|
|Victor Hedman||Tampa Bay Lightning|
|Shayne Gostisbehere||Philadelphia Flyers|
What does a defenseman do in hockey?
A defenseman helps the goalie and blocks shots on goal in the defensive zone. Defensemen also play an offensive role when their team has the puck in the offensive zone.
What equipment do you need to play defenseman in hockey?
As a defenseman, you need the standard hockey equipment: a helmet, jersey, stick, pads, and visor to protect your eyes from getting hit by the puck.