Running plays in hockey is a more fluid process than in almost any other sport. Plays unfold on the ice in a free-flowing manner, with one set play blending quickly into the next. Because of this, it's difficult for the untrained eye to distinguish crashing the net from a goalie screen. In 2K Sports' upcoming NHL 2K6, players will have control over exactly where and when they choose to execute specific plays on the ice through the game's on-the-fly coaching option. Tied to the directional pad on the controller, this feature lets you call one of four plays on either the defensive or offensive sides of the ice using the simple press of a button. In the following pair of videos, we get to take a look at exactly how each play found in the on-the-fly coaching system works. The first video, featuring strictly defensive sets, covers four plays: collapse, release forward, call for help, and clear front of the net. By calling a collapse play, you'll send your players to the front of the net to either grab defensive rebounds or block shots. If you want to set yourself up for a quick breakaway attempt, you can call to release your forward, which will send an offensive player up the ice and in a good position to make a break for the net. The final two plays--call for help and clear front of the net--are variations on the same theme: pressuring the other team, either by hitting the player with the puck or by putting some space between your goalie and the opposing team.
In the second video, four offensive plays are covered: crash net, screen goalie, call for help, and defense pinch. Crashing the net and screening the goalie are all about creating scoring opportunities in front of the net. In the first example, you put forwards in a position to get quick one-timer or rebound goals, while in the second, you use your forwards as screens to block the goalie's vision, in the hopes of sneaking a shot by the obstructed netminder. Similar to the call for help play on the defensive side of the red line, the call for help on the offensive side of the red line is done in hopes of laying the wood on an opposing team member to help open up a scoring chance. If you really want to put some offensive pressure on the other team, you can use the defense pinch play, which will bring your defensemen down from the blue line and closer to the net in hopes of sniping a quick goal. Just watch out for the other team's release of a forward, as it's all too easy to get caught out of defensive position, thus setting up a fast break for the opposition if you get too greedy.