Every year at this time, The Junior Hockey News, and Hockey Talent Management get flooded with emails asking which camps to attend.
Unfortunately we can not, as a matter of practicality, and ethics, give players advice that is specific to their individual situation. There are a few reasons for this. Following these reasons I will give some general information you can use though.
The first reason is that our clients pay us for advice. If we gave advice away, you would be receiving an improper benefit and it would risk your eligibility. It would also be improper for us to do that because we have an obligation to work for our clients. Our work is part of their competitive advantage.
The second reason is that without actually doing all the work that is needed to be done when evaluating a players needs, we could give you bad advice, and we just wont do it.
These things said, here are some very general things that should be common sense, but are usually forgotten.
Individual team camps, unless it is main camp, are not worth the time and money in most cases. Why spend a lot of time and money trying out for one team when you can go to a showcase and try out for a lot of teams?
Import camps, identification camps, and individual team pre draft camps provide you as much opportunity as buying a lottery ticket. Save your time and just buy the lottery ticket. If the team doesn’t know enough about you to tender, sign, or draft you, then they probably never scouted you to begin with.
Chasing team camps will do nothing but end up costing you a lot of time, money and heart ache.
Think about it. If you have one weekend, when one league has half of its teams running a “pre draft” or “identification” camp, how do you even know if you are choosing the right team camp to attend?
Are you going to spend the entire summer chasing camps? If you take that approach you are not doing what every good coach says makes you a better player. The best players spend the summer working out, and eating right. They don’t chase team camps.
Remember, the average person chasing camps last summer spent more than $6,500 doing so, according to a TJHN survey done last year. That money would be much better spent hiring an Adviser, personal trainer and nutritionist.
There is a reason players have success. The reason is they have a plan and are working the plan.
The “shotgun” approach is not one that works. Be smart this summer, develop a real plan. If you develop a real plan, you are probably not going to be one of the players calling me in August still looking for a place to play.
Joseph Kolodziej – Adviser