Anatomy Of A Golden Goal

How Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson Pulled Off The Legendary Shootout Goal To Help The U.S. Win Olympic Gold
By: 
Jessi Pierce

Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson knew exactly how she wanted to get the puck past Canadian goaltender Shannon Szabados, who through 20 minutes of overtime and five preliminary shootout rounds had stopped 39 of 41 shots she faced in the 2018 Olympic gold-medal game. 

Lamoureux-Davidson had a vision of a move she had been working on since the fall of 2010 at the University of North Dakota. She used it during an uncontested breakaway in a 5-0 victory against Russia in the preliminary rounds and figured it was time to try it again. 

"When I was told I was going to go, I was watching our other shooters and I noticed we didn't really change up the speed or angle," says Lamoureux-Davidson, who had witnessed Gigi Marvin and Amanda Kessel score for Team USA, the teams tied at 2-2 in the shootout.

"Everyone that had gone before me came right down the middle at a similar pace, so I came in pretty slow and wanted to vary that aspect when I was going. 

"I touched the puck, and I knew that's what I was going to do, but I also had it in a shooting position just in case [Szabados'] angle was off so I could get the puck off my stick right away." 

Lamoureux-Davidson had the time she needed to complete the shootout goal seen around the world by using her 'Oops!...I Did it Again' move. All that stood in the way of victory was for U.S. netminder Maddie Rooney to make one final save on Canada's Meghan Agosta to clinch Team USA's first gold in 20 years. 

"I think at the end of the day, what matters is that the puck went in the net," recalls Lamoureux-Davidson, who led the team with four goals through five games in PyeongChang, South Korea. "But as I look back, it was a pretty special opportunity and moment that I as an individual had. To make a difference for our team and to have a move work out like that in a big moment is special. It's also a reflection of the time and effort that [coach] Peter [Elander] put in with my sister and I and worked with me to be able to do something like that in such a high-pressure situation. 

"At the end of the day all that matters is the puck went in the net, but to do it in that way I think it's the cherry on top." 

So how does a highlight-reel goal like that take form? Lamoureux-Davidson along with Elander, who currently coaches the Denmark Women's National Team ahead of the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing, broke down the mechanics of the golden goal. 

 

The Start: Slow
Pace is a critical aspect in every shootout opportunity. Come in too fast and you limit your options for shooting the puck. Too slow and you give the goalie  too much time to react. 

"Specifically, during the shootout, I came in pretty slow to give myself an opportunity to come out wide," Lamoureux-Davidson says. "You come in too fast on the shootout there's only so much left and right movement that you can have. So, I came in real slow and had the puck in a shooting position so that if I felt like there was an opening, I could still shoot it really quick..."

"I could see the way she started in, and [Szabados] moved so early, I knew she was going to do it then," adds Elander, who watched the game at 1 a.m. in Columbus, Ohio. "I was so happy. When she started to move that early, I knew she was going to do it and I hoped she would do it. It's one of the best penalty shots ever." 

 

The Middle: Fake Out
"...I faked the shot, opened up my blade, and faked it like I was on my front foot but was on my right foot," recalls Lamoureux-Davidson. "Then I did a little pump fake and brought it to my backhand and then I brought it out really wide..."

Adds Elander: "The puck is pointing like you're going to pass or shoot in the right corner. Then, when you fake the shot, then you push forward and in the middle of that you do a 90-degree turn with the blade and put the puck in front of your stomach. Then, you go as far as you have control of your backhand side."

 

The End: Fake Out, Part 2
"...The fake shot was good enough-I probably could have put it in on my backhand-but I got the goalie to lean as I faked to my backhand and I brought it to my forehand and had a pretty wide open net to work with," she says.

"I'm just glad it didn't roll off my stick or something like that." 

Elander adds: "When you're in the range of movement, you go back to where you started that 90-degree move. How far can you go besides your body with control and move it back on your backhand side, that's the hard part.

He also notes that Lamoureux-Davidson put her own spin on the move he created. 

"I would call it the 'Oops!...I Did it Again' in reverse because she went forehand to backhand to forehand again, which is even harder," he says. "It's a super hard trick to do, and to do it to perfection in a game where everything is on the line, but if I know anything about Jocelyne and Monique is that they are going to show you they can do it. I had tears in my eye when I saw that play."

For Lamoureux-Davidson, 'the move' just added to the overall experience. 

"We went in wanting to win gold. That was the goal," she says. "I am just glad I was able to help my teammates achieve that goal." 

 


 

Jessi Pierce is a freelance writer and podcaster covering the youth hockey and the NHL in St. Paul, Minn.

 

Issue: 
2022-01

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