Protection Paladin Tank Spell Summary — Shadowlands 9.1
On this page, we present you with all spells and procs that you need to understand as a Protection Paladin in World of Warcraft — Shadowlands 9.1.
If you were looking for TBC Classic content, please refer to our TBC Classic Protection Paladin spells.
If you are new to Protection, this is a great place to start to get an understanding of how the spec works. On this page we will discuss what abilities you have, what they are used for within the specialisation, how they interact with each other and also with important cooldowns. If you already have experience with Protection and are comfortable with it in the current expansion, it is recommended you skip this section and move on to the rest of the guide.
Main Resource of Protection Paladins
Protection Paladins have two resources to manage: Mana and Holy Power. That said, you do not have to manage Mana in any way. You will spend most of your time dealing damage and using active mitigation abilities to help your healers keep you alive.
Basic Abilities for Protection Paladins
These are your core skills that are available regardless of talents, and form the core gameplay of the specialization.
Consecration affects an area on the ground around you for 12 seconds, dealing Holy damage to any enemies who stand in it. While you stand in your own Consecration, your Mastery: Divine Bulwark reduces all damage you take. Its cooldown is reduced by your Haste. Note you can only have one Consecration active at any one time, meaning if you are to recast it before its duration is out, it will remove the old one.
Avenger's Shield deals Holy damage to the target, generates 1 Holy Power, interrupts and silences the main target, and also jumps to up to 2 nearby enemies. It can jump to 4 nearby enemies instead with the First Avenger talent. Its cooldown is reduced by your Haste. Also, when you avoid a melee attack or use Hammer of the Righteous, you have a 15% chance to reset the remaining cooldown of Avenger's Shield.
Hammer of the Righteous deals Physical damage to your target and generates 1 Holy Power. While you stand within your Consecration, the hammer deals AoE damage as well. When using the Blessed Hammer talent, it will replace Hammer of the Righteous and instead causes a hammer to spin around you, damaging any enemies it hits and causing them to deal reduced damage to you. Its cooldown is reduced by your Haste.
Hammer of Wrath deals Holy damage and generates 1 Holy Power. This spell can however only be used against enemies that are below 20% health. It becomes a sort of Execute ability that increases our Holy Power generation at the end of an encounter.
Active Mitigation for Protection Paladin
Shield of the Righteous is our active mitigation. Costs 3 Holy Power, and causes Holy damage in a frontal cone, while also providing you with Armor for 4.5 seconds. You are not reasonably going to be able to reach 100% uptime on this buff for extended periods of time, so cover downtime with other cooldowns during high damage.
You can read the rotation page to find out when to use and how to prioritise these abilities in combat.
Talented Abilities for Protection Paladin
Outside of your basic spells and abilities as a Protection Paladin, you can also talent into active use abilities, which we cover here.
Blessed Hammer does not really add a new ability, it instead replaces our Hammer of the Righteous spell. This improved version still only gives 1 Holy Power but does not need an active target to cast it, and it also comes with an extra charge. This means you generate Holy Power better when not in melee range.
Moment of Glory resets and empowers your next 3 Avenger's Shields, making them deal more damage without a cooldown. This can effectively make you able to cast 5 Avenger's Shields in a row and can be a big AoE damage cooldown, as well as Holy Power generation.
Repentance offers another form of crowd control for Protection Paladins.
Blinding Light is most often used as an AoE disorient that stops any current casts. Most of your own damage will not break this crowd control, but most other players in a group or raid will cancel it instantly.
Blessing of Spellwarding is a great tool against most forms of Magic damage. It prevents most magic debuffs to be applied to you, or makes you immune to the debuffs you may have. Unlike Divine Shield it does not remove current debuffs.
Holy Avenger triples your Holy Power generation. This is way too much Holy Power to spend effectively, but it will guarantee full duration on Shield of the Righteous for its duration and a bit longer.
Seraphim provides an alternative Holy Power spender compared to Shield of the Righteous and Word of Glory. These stats increase your damage as well as survivability, which can be beneficial should you wish to stack cooldowns instead of chaining them.
You can read more about these active talents but also all the passive ones on the page dedicated to talents.
Utility for Protection Paladins
Blessing of Protection protects the targeted ally from all Physical Damage for 10 seconds, and it has a 5-minute cooldown. It can be used to clear harmful Physical Damage debuffs and bleeds from the target. Bosses will not attack targets affected by Blessing of Protection. When using the Blessing of Spellwarding talent, Blessing of Protection is replaced by an ability with a 3-minute cooldown that instead protects from Magic attacks. When used on yourself, however, Blessing of Spellwarding will not cause mobs to stop attacking you, but if they have a spell they use on the tank they will simply choose another target for that spell.
Blessing of Sacrifice lasts 12 seconds, transferring 30% of the damage taken by your target to you; transferred damage is reduced to 75% of the original amount. The effect is automatically canceled if the transferred damage would cause you to fall below 20% health. This cooldown is excellent for reducing the damage taken by the other tank, but also other raid members.
Blessing of Freedom removes movement-impairing effects from the targeted ally, also granting them immunity to such effects for 8 seconds.
Cleanse Toxins can be used on yourself or a party member to remove all Poison and Disease effects they may be suffering from.
Turn Evil fears an Undead, Aberration, or Demon for up to 40 seconds. Damage may cause the effect to break. The target does run around while feared so it is not an optimal form of crowd control, but one that can be used if needed.
Important Procs for Protection Paladins
Cooldowns for Protection Paladins
- Guardian of Ancient Kings provides you with a 50% damage reduction for 8 seconds, on a 5-minute cooldown. You should use this before a period of large damage when you are unable to use Shield of the Righteous, or when the damage is Magic and Shield of the Righteous will not do anything.
- Ardent Defender is another powerful defensive ability, with a 2-minute cooldown and an 8-second duration. It reduces all damage taken by 20% while it is active, and it causes the first killing blow against you to heal you up to 12% of your maximum health instead of killing you (the latter effect consumes the Ardent Defender buff). This ability is best used to bypass deadly encounter mechanics, or to save your life in critical moments. It also allows you to play at low health and still be safe.
- Avenging Wrath increases both damage done and healing done by 20%, as well as gives your Paladin abilities 20% increased critical strike chance. This is not only an offensive cooldown, but also very useful defensively.
- Lay on Hands is essentially a massive heal with a very long cooldown. It will heal you (or a targeted ally) for your maximum health, with a 10-minute cooldown. It is best used as an emergency heal, either for yourself or another raid member, if you are unable to cast Word of Glory due to its global cooldown, or if you do not have enough Holy Power.
- Divine Shield makes you immune to all damage for 8 seconds. Normally, this ability is difficult to use while tanking (since the boss will immediately attack the next target on the threat table unless you Taunt it, and only lasts for 3 seconds), but it can be employed to clear certain debuffs, or to avoid fatal encounter mechanics. Final Stand, however, turns Divine Shield into a usable tank cooldown that makes you immune to damage while also forcing all enemies to attack you.
- 28 Jun. 2021: Reviewed and approved for Patch 9.1.
- 09 Mar. 2021: Reviewed for Patch 9.0.5.
- 23 Nov. 2020: Updated for Shadowlands.
- 13 Oct. 2020: Page updated for the Shadowlands pre-patch.
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