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Cradling: Hockey vs. Lacrosse

Is it harder to cradle a lacrosse ball or control a hockey puck?  The net of the lacrosse stick seems like an instant and insurmountable advantage towards the laxers but then again, the puck is sliding on ice and all you really need to do (when you get down to basics) is keep tapping it forward.  Of course, when you get down to basics in lacrosse, it is just about understanding the dynamics of centripetal force application and the corresponding centrifugal reaction.  Very simple stuff.  No confusion there.

So, my brief foray into the scientific didn’t yield any conclusive results.  I’ll have to call in the Mythbusters, I guess.

Let’s try a different type of evidence.  The anecdotal, video kind of evidence that can be found on Youtube.

Basic Cradling demonstrated by UMass grad, Jake Deane:

[fvplayer src=”https://youtube.com/watch?v=0ZMhVH-jbMo?fs=1″ splash=”https://i.ytimg.com/vi/0ZMhVH-jbMo/hqdefault.jpg” caption=”Lacrosse Tips: Cradling with Jake Deane”]

He makes it seem so simple!  Then we go to basic hockey puck handling via HockeyUS:

[fvplayer src=”https://youtube.com/watch?v=IMnBgMDvDTw?fs=1″ splash=”https://i.ytimg.com/vi/IMnBgMDvDTw/hqdefault.jpg” caption=”Stick Handling with Hockey Turns:Hockey Skill”]

Cool.  But I can’t tell which is harder yet.  They both require you to be smooth and form a connection with the stick.  Let’s see what the experts can do with these skills.  Hockey it up first!

[fvplayer src=”https://youtube.com/watch?v=cX74uG2HvBI?fs=1″ splash=”https://i.ytimg.com/vi/cX74uG2HvBI/hqdefault.jpg” caption=”Mark Scheifele’s High Flying Moves”]

Okay, that was impressive.  This isn’t a bad effort either.  And the kid is like 5 years old.

[fvplayer src=”https://youtube.com/watch?v=4BOrSz3YQiI?fs=1″ splash=”https://i.ytimg.com/vi/4BOrSz3YQiI/hqdefault.jpg” caption=”Circus goal by 9 year old in boston mini 1-on-1 competition”]

On the lacrosse side of things, we see equally impressive moves:

[fvplayer src=”https://youtube.com/watch?v=g9Zytgixk6g?fs=1″ splash=”https://i.ytimg.com/vi/g9Zytgixk6g/hqdefault.jpg” caption=”Mike Powell Syracuse lacrosse highlights”]

I’m still not sold.  I’m leaning towards saying hockey is harder… but lacrosse is definitely better.  At least in my heavily biased opinion.  There is just something about the soft pocket that lets you do things that should be physically impossible.  Hockey may be harder, but for my money I’ll take lax skills any day.