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Loafing, Floating, or cherry picking is when a player, the floater (usually a forward), literally loafs — spends time in idleness[1] — or casually skates behind the opposing team's unsuspecting defencemen while they are in their attacking zone.

The tactic is used sparingly as although it sometimes creates a breakaway opportunity for the defending team should they manage to take control of the puck and successfully pass it to the floater, it also creates a five-on-four situation (during even strength play) for the attacking team. Also, a good defenceman usually keeps an eye open for the development of these potential situations where he would immediately backcheck once a floater is spotted.

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