*OFFICIAL* Windsor Spitfires 2012-13 Season Thread (Part 2)
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05-29-2012, 03:29 PM
Join Date: Apr 2012
Originally Posted by
There are definitely some hitches to playing JR. A or Jr. B as a 16 year old. For the most part, 16 year olds don't play much in Jr. B either. It was a problem with Smith's development last season. While the intentions may have seemed wise, in reality, he only really started to get good ice time after Christmas, which left a pretty sizeable void from September to December; when most of the season is played. As well, the Jr. B teams practice once or usually twice a week, wheras the Spits practice much more than that.
It is also a different environment in every way in Jr. B. The hockey is not taken nearly as seriously as in the OHL, and when you subject 16 year olds to an open environment like living away from home for the first time (as would be the case for our 16 year old's next season), as well as a semi-serious hockey environment, I'm not sure how much development really goes on.
Even with DeKort, he only started 2 of the first 7 games last season, eventually taking over the starting role. If you look around the league, though, he was the only 16 year goalie playing in the Western Division, and one of only four that saw any significant number of starts at the Jr. A OR Jr. B levels in Southern Ontario. (DeKort 37, Guigovaz 27, Graham 14, Fotinos 15) That is 4 goalies out of 92 spots.
Most Tier 2 teams have little interest in investing development into 16 year olds who will not be spending their Junior years with them. I'm not saying it doesn't happen, but they are certainly reluctant to develop 16 year olds for the OHL. I think it is a fine line in assessing the benefit to a player sent to Jr. B for a year vs. spending the year as an 11th forward, or a 7th D.
The only reason Smith got little ice time is because the Old Coach allways Promised ice time for players to sign them then hardly plays them or they dont dress. Hopefully with Ryan Donally as the Coach the kids will play. Plus it allways takes a few mnths to get use to the Speed improvement
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