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07-06-2009, 03:11 PM
Join Date: Jun 2009
We have experience in both the EJ and NA, my son having played in both. I like most found it very difficult to evaluate which was better.
When he played for the EJ he played for a poor team. They did poorly against the best EJ teams and so so against the rest. Clearly the bruins, monarchs, and hitmen were at a much different level than the rest of the league.
His jump to the NA was a surprise in that it was faster, and the players bigger and stronger. In addition, his team had the opportunity to play NTDP U17 and U18 10x a year. His team played them even up.
The most amazing thing is that the comparison changes yearly. It is not static. What was true several years ago is not true just 3 years later. Right now, the USHL is a very young league. The NA is much older. In speaking with an owner of both an NA and USHL franchise, the average NA teams because of their age and size might have an advantage over the average USHL team. The best NA teams can compete with the best USHL teams. But that is one mans opinion.
I think the NA has more depth throughout the league than the EJ has throughout the league. However, it is very difficult to compare league to league. If you look at the worst in the NA, I am not sure how they would compete with the worst in the EJ. If you look at the best in the NA, I think they are fairly equal to the best in the EJ. Do a roster comparison of the top NA team with the top EJ teams and look who they have and have put in college.
This past year, the EJ outperformed in the NA in terms of CS top ranked players (EJ 13, NA excluding NTDP 1).
In terms of college commits: the USHL is tops, the NA typically moves kids to CCHA and WCHA after all USHL commits have been made. EJ this year out placed kids than the NA and it is mostly to HE, AH, ECAC. What is shocking is that if you look at the 3 top EJ programs, they send more kids to school than the top 3 NA programs. The monarchs in the EJ send as many as most USHL teams.
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