When we considered this concept at the beginning of the year, as with anything new…there were a ton of questions, unknowns and not answers to them all. Would there be interest? Would there be enough players? Would players with passion sign up for it? Could we find ice with the rink down? Will there be appropriate tournaments for the level of play? And with all those question marks…would we even be able to compete?
This was until we played our first games. Thank you all for taking on the challenge of these unchartered waters. We can only improve by your child accepting a challenge of the unknown!
The key to hockey success is consistent skills and system training. We are moving in that direction a little more with each practice. It was fabulous how the players adapted to each other, and the coaches put together plans that enabled us to compete very well!
The best of the experience is the great learning opportunities that come from this type of challenge. More than anything, learning to play with urgency. Pressure in all zones. Eliminate all opposition players as options when they have the puck. Accelerating in to good angles and positions to create time and space when we gain possession of the puck to transition with lightning speed. Shooting to score. Maddog in all areas to win battles. Never lose a 1 on 1 battle. Beat 1 on 1 offensively with acceleration around, not thru players (other than unique situations) etc
The other thing is understanding you are only as good as your teammates. You may have more experience than others on the team, however the best players do everything possible to help lessor experienced players play to the best of their ability always using positive reinforcement. We all do much better when we feel good about ourselves! Catch each other doing things right!
No player is as good as Crosby, Gretzky, Orr or McDavid on their team…but these guys are renowned for being the very best teammates. Taking new players under their wing, over for dinner, including them in all events etc. Important to note, you may be the star on your team this year, but when you move on to higher levels and are trying to get ice time and be accepted, you will hope the stars of that team will be as caring and supportive. It can be a lonely experience when you are new and trying to fit in with older and more experienced players. I went from being a big dog at 15ys in Midgets, to the next year a little unexperienced rookie in Junior hockey with players ready to go to full rides to college and then pro. Be a good teammate. When coaches are in a tough position deciding on players they will chose those that are great teammates with a great attitude!
We now hope every Prime player will take what they have learned and help our NWHL players and teams rise to new levels with your positive influence. We are dedicated to continue to challenge every player to improve skills and learn the game more so it is more fun than ever to play. The better you are, the more fun you will have. Lets keep the passion and energy!