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Confessions Of A Junior Hockey Coach – Rookie Or Veteran If You Are In Charge Who Do You Choose?

In life, is it not true that nearly everything come down to the choice between Rookie or Veteran?  Even when it come to picking the place to eat for supper.  Do we chose the Veteran we are the most familiar with, the one we can always count on consistent quality, or do we chose the Rookie down the road who advertise that they are world famous for the food?

You may think my example is not good, but it is no different then every part of the hockey organization.  It is no different then in every part of the hockey development systems.  It is no different in how you the player need to look at you career, and it is no different then how the coach make decision to pick his team.

Nine time out of ten, everyone go with the choice of the Veteran.  From food, to stick, to skate to player, to coach, to General Manager to player adviser, to player agent, this is just the way it is.  With good reason.

Consistency take time.

It is very rare that the rookie can bring the consistent level of performance that is required to get the job done.  Experience matters.

It is very rare in life that the Rookie can have all the tool to consistently lead anything or anyone in the right direction.  Rookie make mistake which help them become seasoned Veteran down the road of life.

Would you give you entire retirement account to Rookie investment adviser fresh out of Timbuktoo University?  Of course he know what he read, but he have no real experience.  Do you trust you future to this person?  I think not.

Would you expect you team to hire a Head Coach who never coach before but he got his coaching certificate?  I think not.

Would you hire the General Manager who just finished the internship with the MLS team?  I think not.

Would you hire the adviser or agent who have no experience in actually getting player from the beginning of the career to the top of the career?  No, you would not.

Smart Rookie player in any line of work including hockey know that the Veteran is critical to success.  Rookie player then must learn that because the veteran is needed, he must sit behind the veteran and learn.

Inexperienced player, parent, team owner, coach, general manager, adviser and agent almost always make the very big mistake.  Inexperienced people who do not understand that development at any job, or any position take time, are usually the same people who have bad experience or fail.

Now some of you are thinking about a few NHL GM hired recently with next to no experience.  True.  But each have some experience, and each not solely in charge.  Each is surrounded by Veterans.

So, when you look for the team, look for the team with the experience.  If you go with the Rookie, you may get lucky, but I always say you make you own luck by putting the odds in you favor.

So back to the question, since it is you who do the hiring by choosing the team, coach, GM, adviser, or agent.  Who do you chose, the Rookie or the Veteran?


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