Saskatchewan Minor Hockey Thread
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02-05-2012, 03:56 PM
Join Date: May 2009
Originally Posted by
Coaching philosophies of SV? Not totally jumping on the SV band wagon but their head coach and his pre-decessor put through a fair number of good players through the Warman program. Like it or not, agree/disagree. I've seen these situations before and sometimes you pick from what's presented to you.... The best of what you got. Sometimes it is the parents who realize their kid is not going to see the ice alot BUT rather than playing tier II they sacrifice common sense for the sake of belonging and wearing a couple of "AA's" on a team jacket. Life is totally not fair and if the player truly wants to be a player, they will take the situation that is presented to them and make the most of it OR get on to a solid tier II program with great coaching and develop for the following season. We get too wound up with AA, AAA, etc, etc. Personally, if the parents understand fair is not equal, then carry on accordingly within reason. Many parents are accepting of this and use the analogy of life is not fair, earn your reward. Just a different opinion, but I do agree there is a limit and 2-3 shifts over the course of a period for example is not acceptable.
I'm not sure that introducing bantam draft success is really a good indicator of coaching talent. Take, for instance, Ryan Pilon. There's no doubt in my mind he's the most naturally gifted, polished defenseman to come out of Saskatchewan since Ryan Murray. Should the SV (formerly Warman) staff be given credit for that? Well, they did promote a system that helped to pad Pilon's stats, and it's likely that had some impact on his mid-season number 1 draft status. Then again, by the end of the season he had been so overplayed that he was maybe 80% the player he was at Christmas. All in all, i tend to give elite players most of the credit for their play and so i'm confident Pilon, Leverton, Forsberg et al would be approximately where they are now, regardless who they played for.
Bantam AA promotes itself as a developmental league. For all its players. Yes, there is always a tension between winning and player development, but ultimately coaches should be coming down on the side of the players -
the players - not their own resumes. Does that mean coaches shouldn't be able to shorten the bench during critical games or determine appropiate roles (eg, PP or PK) for their players? No, i'm not that pollyannaish. Most coaches who regularly roll three lines (and they are out there) will shorten their bench in the third period of a provincial or tournament game. It's accepted. And most parents i've seen are actually okay with this, even when it's their kid on the bench, because they feel they've been treated fairly by their coaches. But when your practices are focused on systems with little or no emphasis on individual skill development, when benches are shortened in the first week of the season so that some players are seeing 40+ minutes of hockey and others a mere 10 minutes, and with almost no feedback directed towards the players (besides reduced ice time), then yes, i have problems with your "coaching" philosophy. It's not coaching, it's just lazy. And what you get is an unhappy team (and i use the word team in its loosest sense). Last year two players quit and i know of 5 more who were miserable and would have played
else if they could have (btw, these were not "bubble" kids).
Kids deserve more than getting cheated out of year of fun and parents deserve more than getting cheated out of money they thought was going to their kid's hockey development. Obviously you can have "success" with this kind of coaching philosophy (if success is solely defined in wins and losses) and it doesn't require being a hockey genius: put out your top 3 or 4 players all game and hope to exploit another team's commitment to rolling all its players or, put out your top 3 or 4 players against a like-minded coaching staff and hope your best players beat their best players. Pretty simple stuff, really. And if it was Junior A or even Midget AAA, i probably wouldn't have a problem with it. But it's not - and they're 13 and 14 year old kids in what is advertised to be a developmental league.
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