Pass Shots

One of the more controversial, if I can call it that, scoring methods in NHL’94 is the pass shot.  The most simple definition of a pass shot is when you press the B button (pass) towards the goal, instead of the usual C (shot) button.  A direct pass (not passing to another player) comes off the stick very quickly and with a lot of velocity.  When angled correctly, it can be a deadly way to score goals as the puck rips by auto-goalies.  Due to the quickness and speed of the puck, it also makes it difficult to manual goalie against.

Pass shots can be effective when used at the right times, but many people who first learn how to pass shoot tend to overuse this method, leading to botched scoring opportunities.  A pass shot that misses usually flies wide into the boards, giving your opponent the puck.  Sometimes just shooting the puck in close is the better answer.  Here I’ll demonstrate the various uses and angles of the pass shot.  Use at your own risk!  🙂

Each one of these can be done on the forehand and/or backhand.  The key is lining up the puck and angle for maximum success.

  • Straight
  • Deke (long and short)
  • Diagonal (long and deke)
  • Cut-across
  • Five-hole

The execution of all of these shots is generally the same — you have to press the direction you are shooting and B at the same time, or one right before the other.


I’ll start with the easiest of the pass shots to learn: straight pass shot.  I say this is the easiest because you will already be holding the directional pad up (home) or down (away) before you take your shot.

The key to executing this shot successfully is to line yourself up with the inside goalpost on either side.  One you think you have the correct angle, press B to fire away!  I find this easier to execute shooting down, as holding down also keeps the puck low.

Picture example:

Left side going up, left side going down, right side going up, right side going down.


Once you start getting a feel for this particular shot, the next step is to practice a deke pass shot.  Dekeing will increase your chances of success because you are moving the goalie out of position.  Given the quickness of the pass shot, and the fact that you can release it at any range, it’s nearly impossible for an auto-goalie to save.  Particularly on a backhanded shot.

The backhanded deke pass shot is easier to execute because it requires less area to deke than the forehand. In the simplest (and most effective) example, start at your forehand side and go towards the goalie.  Deke to your backhand and when the puck lines up near the post, press up (or down if you’re shooting down) and B.  Most of the time the goalie will be out of position, and you will pocket an easy goal.


The forehand version of this doesn’t work quite as well, but is still possible.  There are two reasons for this.  First, dekeing to the forehand requires more time for the player to swing around (nature of the graphics), so you can’t catch the goalie out of position as quickly.

Second, the  forehand requires more room for the player to line up, so you have to be closer towards the opposite side of the net, leaving you less area to work with.  See below.

Because of the velocity of the pass shot, you can blast a deke pass shot from as high up as the top of the circle, and as low as the goal crease!


The next variant of the pass shot is diagonal.  This is generally a little more difficult because the angles are more difficult to visualize, and executing requires you to press the directional pad diagonally vs straight up/down.  It’s tricky, but once you get the hang of it, it’s another weapon you can use to score.  Forehand and backhand are equally effective.

The first use of the diagonal is around the top of the faceoff circle, and the key is to find the right angle in which to release the pass shot to beat the goalie on the opposite side. It’s definitely trickier, and less likely to score than the other methods.  However, the shot can come off a quite a surprise and generate a quick goal for your team.

Here are examples:

Picture/GIF Forehand/Backhand

The other example of a diagonal pass shot is a variant of the deke, and executed when close to the goalie.  Just like a deke, you want to be moving one way, but then diagonally shoot the other way.  You can see examples in the video.


The cut-across variant of the pass shot is used in close and is a kind of “slam dunk” into the net.  Timing is key here, you have to hit up (or down) at the very moment you get the puck by the goalie and then press B.  You should already understand the concept and execution of the pass shot; this just shows yet another effective application of this method.

PICTURE – Forehand/Backhand


One of the more frustrating goals when scored against you is when a slapper goes through the goalies legs and into the net!  Even more frustrating is when you launch a pass from behind the redline through the legs!  While technically this is a pass shot, you’re just hoping the puck squeaks through the goaltenders legs.  Just aim towards the goal and fire one.