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High End Hockey and TSR Hockey Team Up To Present 5000 Shot Challenge

Saturday, July 25, 2015, 6:51PM

Quick, name three of the hardest shooters in the NHL. No doubt, you mentioned Boston Bruin Zdeno Chara, Nashville Predator Shea Weber, and/or Washington Capital Alex Ovechkin.

Known to possess the hardest shots in the league, all three have certainly raised the pulse of a goaltender, or two, when the puck is about to be released off their sticks.  And when one of those shots elludes a netminder, you can hear people ask, “How does a player shoot a puck that hard?”

Like any other hockey skill, shooting a puck with velocity and accuracy is not something someone is born to do. It takes practice. A lot of proper practice.

And that is where High End Hockey and TSR Hockey come in.

High End Hockey is headquartered at the Breakaway Ice Center in Tewksbury, Massachusetts and trains players from mites to NHL players with the sole goal of giving them the tools to improve their games.

TSR Hockey has been the premier hockey retailer in New England since 2000 and has locations in New Hampshire (Salem, Concord, Hooksett) and Massachusetts (Haverhill, Lawrence, North Andover).

Since players who participate in High End Hockey’s programs have also been customers of TSR Hockey, it made sense to HEH owner Jon Hutcheon, and TSR owner Brendan Sheehy, to team up and present a program that would help hockey players improve their puck shooting skills.

“This is our third year of the 5000 Shot Challenge, a summer program where a player has 12 weeks to shoot 5000 pucks,” explained TSR Hockey’s Marketing Manager, Julie Dalton, who not only works in hockey but also plays on a women’s team named, The Ms. Conducts. “It’s (5000 Shot Challenge) sponsored by Bauer. Years ago, Brendan Sheehy’s father worked at Bauer so they (Bauer) donate whatever their newest stick is and we do prizes throughout the course of the event. We have ‘Sniper of the Week’ where a participant is awarded a $15.00 gift card to TSR and a 30-minute shooting lesson at High End Hockey and even if you’re not chosen for Sniper of the Week, you still get a t-shirt for participating.”

“The goal is to keep kids shooting all summer to get them stronger and more accurate shots. There’s no cost to join and the benefit to TSR is creating a community event for kids to join and stay active and it brings people back in to turn in their sheets, which charts their progress. One of our goals at TSR is to be like the old TV show, Cheers, where everybody knows your name. We’re a community store and very much like a family.”

The history between High End Hockey, TSR, and Dalton herself, go back a few years which made it the proverbial, no brainer, that HEH and TSR work together on the venture this summer.

“Over the last couple of years, Jon (Hutcheon) has coached my sons, my daughter, and myself, on the ice and in shooting lessons, so it was through that relationship that everyone agreed that HEH should be involved in the Challenge,” Dalton said.

“He’s (Hutcheon) enthusiastic and provides us with weekly shooting videos. He makes it fun because he works with players of all ages, youth to adults. He makes the Challenge relatable. His videos show how to execute the different shots and also shows college and pro players, who train with him, properly shooting pucks. As an added bonus, if a Sniper of the Week doesn’t live within the area, he films a video, specifically, for that player, so for all of those reasons, it’s a win/win situation for all involved.”

As the owner of High End Hockey, Hutcheon is very happy to have HEH engaged in the 5000 Shot Challenge but, more importantly, as a coach, he believes in the program.

“We became involved this year and really like being able to teach the techniques of shooting to players of all ages,” said Hutcheon, who coached the 2013 18-Under Neponset Valley River Rats to the USA Hockey Tier I national championship. “We have a large synthetic shooting area at Breakaway Ice Center, where we conduct our lessons and since kids love to shoot pucks, they really enjoy learning the techniques that will give them more accurate and harder shots, which should result in their scoring more goals when the season begins.”

Hutcheon is also excited about the popularity of the videos.

“The Video of the Week gets posted to Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook each week and we’ve received great feedback from players and parents,” Hutcheon continued. “They’ve been fun to film and the players, who participate in them like Maury Edwards (UMass Lowell/Straubing, German Elite League), Pat Mullane (Boston College/Assat, Finland SM Liga), Joe Whitney (Boston College/New York Islanders), and Brian Dumoulin (Boston College/Pittsburgh Penguins), among others, have been great and we really appreciate their cooperation.”

Hutcheon revealed there is more to come.

“After the 5000 Shot Challenge is completed, we’re planning on continuing with the videos and expanding them to include instruction in hockey’s other skills such as skating, puck handling, passing and many more aspects of the game.”

It is clear that the HEH/TSR Hockey 5000 Shot Challenge is, not only demanding, but educational and fun.

What better way to learn about shooting a puck than from a national championship winning coach and professional players on your computer screen, then going out and applying what you have just learned. Not to mention, the prizes you can win for participating.

If you have not started the Challenge, it is not too late to start, just go to tsrhockey.com and click on 5000 Shot Challenge and do not forget to watch the videos on HighEndHockey.com or by following on Twitter at @HighEndHockey.

Ok, so, who will be hockey’s next hardest shooter?