Confessions Of A Junior Hockey Coach – Parents Can Ruin Careers


Ah yes, it seem that last week I touch on the nerve of many people when I say player are not as special as they think they are.  We have so many email on that story that I was ask to follow it up and explain more.

Do player think they are special?  Of course.  Some are, some are not.

Part of the deeper problem is the parents.  Yes, the parents.

Coaches right now who read this are laughing their heads off because they know how true it is.  The Coaches talk, and they can call another Coach anywhere in the world and find out about any player.  They get the scouting report, the reference check, and find out about the player ability, attitude and personality.

The Coach also find out about the parents.  It is a question every Coach ask of other Coaches today.  “What are the parents like?”

If you are the parent who always blame the coach, or the system, or someone else, you are ruining your players career or his chance to have a career.  If you are the parent who always complain about ice time, or about not getting enough opportunity, you may be ruining the players chances.

Everything always get back to the Coach.  All the negative talk, all the complaint, all the bitching and moaning about every little thing eventually make it back to the Coach.  And you think the Coach will reward the player who parents always complain?  Or, you think they will reward the player who sits, listen, asks question, and work hard to create his opportunity every day?

Everyone see the player who has high skill level but never seem to quite reach the playing level many think he should be at.  Everyone see the less skilled player who always seem to play just a bit higher than everyone thought he would.  So what is the difference between the two?

In many case it is the attitude of the player and the attitude of the parents.

Do anyone honestly believe the Coach want the phone call, the email, and to hear from other people about the constant complaining?  Do anyone think that is effective technique to get more opportunity?

In work, when you want the raise in the pay, you have to earn it.  Do your job.  Why would it be different in the game?  Do the people at work who always complain get the raise and the promotion?  No, they usually get the can!

To be sure, parents love the children.  Also to be sure, love can get in the way of honesty and seeing things clearly.  It is hard for the parent to see everything in the game that Coach see.  They are not there for every practice, the conversation in the dressing room, seeing how the player relate to his team mates off and on the ice.

Even if you may be right parent.  It is time to keep your opinion to yourself.  It is time to be quiet and just let them play.  Your attitude transfer to your child attitude.  Good attitude or bad attitude, it is contagious. Bad attitude player in the room is the cancer.  Bad attitude parent is also the cancer and can kill the team from the stands.

So parent, it is time to keep the mouth closed.  Unless you are superior hockey Coach with high level championship ring on the finger who has better resume than the Coach, expressing your opinion will likely hurt your child more than it will help.