David MacDonald, and the Hockey Family Advisory staff, work with hockey players and their families to help identify opportunities in which players can leverage their athletic skills to receive immediate and future benefits, as they go about improving their game and expanding their educational opportunities.
“Our clients include young players who play at the prep school, major midget, U-16 and U-18 programs, Junior “A”, Major Junior and college hockey (both NCAA and CIS), levels throughout all of North America.”
We work with a limited number of hockey players of each birth year and help them identify and put in place a strategic plan to enable them to achieve their athletic and academic goals. We undertake promotional activities to help our clients receive proper placements.
Each fall, many of our clients attend prep school and college programs on scholarships and bursaries, enabling them to pursue their athletic and academic dreams, while positioning themselves for tremendous future opportunities.
In addition to the many academic and hockey questions, we help players and their families identify and negotiate the important things that should be taken into account by every student-athlete who is interested in playing at the next levels.
Please contact us if you think you could put our experience and expertise to work for you.
It is also the time of year when tryouts are being announced, players protected, and draft lists prepared, and much uncertainty about next season.
On top of that….., almost everyday, there is a new invitation in your inbox from a different showcase event.
Prep school applications are being submitted.
So much to do, but so little time.
I constantly remind people that “It’s the things that you don’t know, that you don’t know…. that will get you in the most trouble in this game!”
I know that many of our readers have considered using the services of an agent or an advisor, and we have included an excellent article in this newsletter regarding the difference…., and how using the services of one (or the other) may affect the future playing career of a player, and the future options that a player may have.
Many people contact us too late in the process, after they have made decisions, which drastically reduce their options for the future.
These decisions may include the fact that they have chosen the wrong academic classes and/or programs, or they have decided to play in a hockey program that receives little (or no) attention from the college (or other) programs that they may wish to pursue in the future.
We think it is important to keep all options open for as long as one can.
We remind players to be proactive, and to take control of their own destiny (or hire us to do it for you).
We often hear from players, who tell us that they counted on last year’s coach to help promote them, and when it does not happen the way that they believe, they are disappointed.
We remind parents and players that at this time of year and over the next five-six months, it is the # 1 responsibility of your coach to recruit for their own )next year’s) team.
Most coaches have great intentions, but their lives are very busy….., and it’s not fair to place that burden upon them.
If a coach hears of an opening and has four players (that he is graduating) who could benefit from being promoted, what does he say about you vs. the other players?
Coaches are a very important part of the recruiting and placement process, but I often hear from players in September and October who say that they were counting on the previous year’s coach to help get them a tryout, and/or to talk to someone about a certain team.
Do not count on your coach.
They are too busy winning today’s games and recruiting for their own team for next year, and although they have the greatest of intentions, it is possible to fall between the cracks.
Most coaches are honourable guys…. but….. remember, your coach’s interest may not be the same as your own.
Perhaps as a 17 year old, you could benefit from playing on a junior team, but your existing coach could benefit from having you on the midget team for an extra year.
Over the years, we have seen some players who are 19 years of age who are ready to play College Hockey, but their junior coaches have not wanted to lose them until after their 20th year, and they have tried to hold them back.
We have heard from players who have attended a major junior camp as a 16-17 year old, who we know were only being used as” a filler” in the camp.
We knew they would never be a member of the team that they were drafted by, but were told wonderful stories by others, and as a result gave up their chance to later play college hockey, because they accepted a gift, stayed too long in camp, signed an agreement, associated with an agent or an unscrupulous advisor, or played an exhibition game with a CHL team. Having said that, the CHL is the right decision for some players, and we often help families and players figure that out (while ensuring that they keep their options open),
Remember, (likely) ONLY YOU are able to look out for your best interests.
Are your familiar with the various rules that you must abide by in order to protect your options for the future?
ONLY YOU can assure yourself that you are not placing yourself in jeopardy.
Do not make decisions, based on ego.
Take control of your own destiny (as much as you can).
These are some of the things you think about!!!!!
If you think we can help, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.