Power forward (ice hockey)

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Jarome Iginla, one of the players described as a "power forward".

In ice hockey, power forward (PF) is a loosely applied characterization of a forward who is big and strong, equally capable of playing physically or scoring goals and would most likely have high totals in both points and penalties.[1] It is usually used in reference to a forward who is physically large, with the toughness to dig the puck out of the corners, possesses offensive instincts, has mobility, puck-handling skills,[2][3] may be difficult to knock off the puck[4] and willingly engage in fights when he feels it's required.[5] Possessing both physical size and offensive ability, power forwards are also often referred to as the 'complete' hockey player.[6][7]

Historically, power forward was not originally a hockey term, finding comparatively recent origins from basketball.[8][9] Harry Sinden, former president of the Boston Bruins, claims power forward first became part of hockey terminology because of the style of play of Cam Neely, an NHL player from 1983 to 1996, who could play ruggedly and also score goals.[7]

Players who have been described as power forwards are Brendan Shanahan,[10][11] Clark Gillies,[12] Jarome Iginla,[5] Kevin Stevens,[13] Mark Messier,[14] Joe Thornton,[15] Ryan Getzlaf,[16] Wendel Clark,[17][18] Milan Lucic[19] and Ryan Smyth.[20], and Alexander Ovechkin[21][22][23].


  1. ^ Diamond, Dan. Total Hockey: the Official Encyclopedia of the National Hockey League. Andrews McMeel Publisher. p. 619. ISBN 0-8362-7114-9. 
  2. ^ "Hockey Terms". Southern Professional Hockey League. Retrieved Jan 23, 2010. 
  3. ^ Dolezar, Jon A. (June 14, 2003). "Looks can be deceiving: Steve Bernier". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved Jan 23, 2010. 
  4. ^ Nichols, Chris (Sep 9, 2009). "Discounted Price". Sportsnet.ca. Retrieved Jan 23, 2010. 
  5. ^ a b LaPointe, Joe (April 27, 2004). "Hockey; Calgary’s Captain Courageous". New York Times. Retrieved Jan 23, 2010. 
  6. ^ Greene, Colleen (Dec 26, 2006). "Blackhawks AHL prospects update: Troy Brouwer". Hockeysfuture.com. Retrieved Jan 23, 2010. 
  7. ^ a b Allen, Kevin (June 9, 2005). "Hall of Fame-bound Bruin star Neely defined 'power forward'". USA Today. p. C6. 
  8. ^ "definition of power forward". Random House. Retrieved Jan 23, 2010. 
  9. ^ Montgomery, Ted (Dec 3, 2008). "Some hockey lingo deserves a spot in the penalty box". USA Today. Retrieved Jan 24, 2010. 
  10. ^ http://www.mlive.com/redwings/index.ssf/2012/06/former_red_wing_brendan_shanah_1.html
  11. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=4664533
  12. ^ LaPointe, Joe (June 20, 2002). "Hockey;Gillies Heads the List Into the Hall of Fame". New York Times. Retrieved Jan 23, 2010. 
  13. ^ McMillan, Tom (Dec 25, 1991). "Money in the Bank". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. D1. 
  14. ^ Journal Wire Services (May 15, 1990). "Bruins Hoping for Revenge against Oilers". The Milwaukee Journal. p. c3. 
  15. ^ Associated Press. "ESPN - Thornton traded to Sharks for three players - NHL". Sports.espn.go.com. Retrieved 2008-09-27. 
  16. ^ Wigge, Larry (May 3, 2009). "Getzlaf gifted at finding second gear". NHL.com. Retrieved Jan 23, 2010. 
  17. ^ http://www.torontosun.com/2013/12/12/wendel-clark-the-code-a-blurred-line-in-hockey
  18. ^ http://www.nhl.com/ice/blogpost.htm?id=3268
  19. ^ Ken Campbell. "One-on-One with Boston Bruins' Power Forward Milan Lucic.". Hockey News. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  20. ^ Ryan Smyth
  21. ^ http://www.thescore.com/nhl/news/673118
  22. ^ http://www.cbssports.com/nhl/eye-on-hockey/24500770/gifs-alex-ovechkin-jack-hillen-collide-in-overtime
  23. ^ http://www.miamiherald.com/sports/nhl/florida-panthers/article5417898.html
Positions on the hockey rink
Forwards: Hockey Rink.svg
Left wing | Centre | Right wing
Left defenceman | Right defenceman
Power forward | Enforcer | Grinder | Pest | Captain | Head coach | Referee & linesman