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Confessions Of A Junior Hockey Coach – How Bad Do You Want Success?

Over the weekend, I spend time with the boss freezing our behind off in Northern Michigan.  It is good to sit with colleague when you can to just talk hockey instead of always watching.

We listen to a motivational speaker for a short time too.  It was very interesting to me because I do not normally do this activity.  But the speaker ask everyone how badly they want to succeed?  He frame the question in several way to make you think.

So we sit and we talk about player past, present and future.  The differences between them, and the differences in how they prepare.

It is amazing to look back at how the game and player preparation have change over so many year.

Today player who aspire to play at the highest levels is a very driven athlete.  The most important word in they vocabulary is: SACRIFICE

The top athlete today will sacrifice all he need to in order to achieve his goal.  They do not drink to excess, they do not smoke, many do not chew, they do not do drugs, they train all the time, they watch what they eat, they finely tune their tools which is their body and mind.

Such was not the case years ago.  Training was something to be done the month before you were required to report, and you went to camp to get into game shape.

It is so disappointing to me, and to many other people to see some player today who are not willing to sacrifice.  They talk of what they want, but are not willing to do what is required.

As the example, I recently spoke to the player who want to play NCAA hockey.  I find out the other day he can not get into school because of the grades.  He did not make the sacrifice of doing the home work and studying and that now will keep him from the NCAA.

I see some of the player from Junior A in Canada in the bar after a game not too long ago.  Drinking, chewing tobacco, and “living the dream”.  It is the shame because I know two of these player have talent enough to play Major Junior, or NCAA but they not willing to sacrifice the party.  They have the reputation of the party animal now, and it is over for them.

I know another player who do sacrifice.  He is not the highly skilled player, but he is the highly motivated player.  HE train hard, work hard every shift, watch his diet, and do all the right thing.  He is not the best player, but he will sacrifice what ever he have to in order to get to his goal.  This same player just sign to play NCAA hockey because he have great grade and great preparation and he want it more than others.

So I ask you, how bad do you want success?  You can say you want it, but do you really mean it?  Are you willing to sacrifice?  Or do you want to be remembered as someone who should have made it?


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