Scraping the crease
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Scraping the crease

I've gotten back into goaltending this year and, as a more mature goalie (I hope), I've been doing more research into the position, such as technique, equipment, etc.

One interesting thing I asked myself was, "Why do goalie's scrape their creases before games?" Here's Brayden Holtby of the Washington Capitals doing it:

Now I did some research and there are some reasons why goalies might do this but also read on a few Reddit threads that scraping the crease essentially does nothing.

The reason I'd like to propose goalies might do this is order (control) and chaos. Hockey is a lot like life where there is tons of "chaos" — things you can't control. Someone could take a shot on a goalie and a player's stick gets in the way and there's a weird "bounce" which makes the puck go in. Players get tangled up and one player ends up tearing his ACL. In any case, with all this "chaos", I think goalies might scrape their crease as a mental exercise. It allows them to create "order" and have some semblance of control in a world that's largely uncontrollable. It's a routine that you always do. This is very Jordan Peterson-esque re: "make your bed".

Written: September 21, 2020