The Flavor of the Month

I heard a story recently about a junior hockey showcase. NCAA rules permit coaches to talk with players after a showcase concludes.

At the end of this particular showcase, a team had to wait for over an hour and half for one player to finish talking with college coaches. Soon after the showcase, the player committed to play Division I hockey. Two years later, he transferred to a different Division I institution and finished his career as a role player.

At the same showcase, the same team had another player on it’s roster who had almost zero college interest. By the end of the year, he secured a commitment to play Division I hockey. Three years later he was playing every night in the NHL.

Too many times we get caught up with “The Flavor of the Month”. Coaches become obsessed with people who catch their eye and have a great two or three game stretch at a showcase. Players put immense amounts of pressure on themselves to have good games in big settings.

If we recruit the “Flavor of the Month”, we probably shouldn’t wonder later why that same player struggles with his or her consistency in games. We need to put more emphasis on the player who succeeds over time – recruiting players who play the game the right way and pay attention to detail , rather than the one who catches your eye one weekend in early September.

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