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Would you rather play Major Junior or Division 1 college hockey?

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Old
02-17-2013, 06:29 PM
  #1
BigDreamer
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Would you rather play Major Junior or Division 1 college hockey?

Im 15 a freshman and a goalie playing junior and i have been thinking about which path to travel. I have talked to both major junior and division 1 college teams. I think i would prefer Major Junior but could you guys help me out. Remeber this is from a goalies perspective.
I know that if i choose major junior i wont make the team next year and i would play on there farm team and get called up hopefully for a game or two. If i choose college i would have to find a team maybe in the NAHL or some other league. If you know any good leagues to develop in please share. I have not commited anywhere and i am still looking at options for next year.

Thanks for the help.

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02-17-2013, 06:50 PM
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Lazarrr
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My dad was a very good hockey player had the same options as you. It was either play for the Ottawa 67's or play Jr A and get a scholarship.

He decided Jr A because there was a chance he could still get drafted and he would be getting school paid for completely.

He played Jr A for two years, got a scholarship with RPI (div 1), played 2 seasons and absolutely hated it. The hockey is so much different between the two. Being a goalie I don't know how much it would change. But for NCAA it's all about skating and is rather boring he said. Junior is a lot more exciting and from what I've gathered, a lot more fun.

My dad left after 2 years and got a training camp invite from Washington which he declined because of injuries. He said though, that not playing major junior was the worst mistake of his life.

Also with major junior you get your schooling paid for as well depending on how many years you play. Very good chance you could play CIS or semi-pro. I'm your ambition is playing in the NHL, which I assume it would be, then I'm sure I don't have to tell you that there's a better chance of getting drafted playing major junior then Jr A.

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02-18-2013, 02:27 PM
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spitshockey81
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Major junior if you're not sold on going to American university

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02-18-2013, 02:33 PM
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Major Junior if you can get locked into a good Canadian University deal.

Not all players get 100% paid for after junior is over, but if you can get close then that it the way to go, IMO.

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02-20-2013, 10:46 AM
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My son is going through the the ranks and just a few years ahead of you. There is no right nor wrong answer but here are a few things to consider. Firstly while finishing high school the choice was to play the highest level posible while retaining NCAA eligibility which is Junior A, this was to keep all options open and remain in school to get high marks should the NCAA route be the ultimate choice. For Major Junior i would suggest it if you were drafted first three rounds and in Ontario and gone through puberty that might be the way to go...make sure you have a good contract including education package, injury gaurantee. Major Junior is also a good choice if you are NOT getting good marks in school and have no intention of going to US Colleges, as mentioned a good Canadian University is a valid choice however you must enroll within 18 months of finishing Major Junior hockey or you lose the education funds!

After playing a year or two of Junior A you then are a bit more mature and can make the move to Major Junior or see what options are opening up in NCAA with schools making contact. Delaying Major Junior earlier opened up choices, and if you are a late bloomer puberty wise allows a player to fill out to make a choice when the time is right.

I would not suggest playing a game for Major Junior since one game and your eligibility is done, trading a single game for your entire NCAA eligibility to me isn't a good choice.

For a player going through puberty late NCAA allows him to develop a bit later when he physically can meet the challenge. So the route to higher hockey is still there just a bit later in age so for some kids who develop physically or need time to gain muscle this option works. Some NCAA schools play in front of packed houses, full bands, screaming fans and have awesome facilities you should set up a few hockey tours perhaps a game you would be amazed.

This summer we now have the choice with a commitment for Major Junior and talking to four NCAA Div 1 colleges. The final choice still has to be made but it sure is nice having options when the player is a bit more mature to understand what path is right for him.

Good luck whatever choice you make!

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02-20-2013, 11:36 AM
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I'm thinking your Canadian? I have a family member (USA) playing his final season of Jr A in Canada. He wasn't drafted by any Maj Jr teams, but he did have offers. He chose to keep his NCAA options open. Here's why. When he was your age he had a lot of interest from all over. At that time, he was playing at the top level (AAA) and holding his own. In my area most of the top players attend private/prep schools with the hope of moving on to the National Program at 16 or going out to play in the USHL. At this stage, a lot of players stop developing and level off. Others come out of nowhere and become the new studs.

Personally, I feel that if a player that's 15, 16, even 17 isn't in the top 10% at his age group, and is from the USA, they should keep their NCAA options open. Now if they have no desire to attend college, or their going into the family business etc. after hockey, then I say go for it, and love every minute of it! Canadian Jr A has a lot of young players, who have been drafted by a Maj Jr Teams, but aren't ready or sure if they want to go that route. Sadly there's also a lot of players who gave up their NCAA options and went for it, only to see marginal ice time, got released, or aged out. So now their career will be over at the age of 21. They can still play at a Canadian University, but there's a time limit to when you have to start by.

You may be surprised at the number of NCAA players who went undrafted by the NHL, then after growing as a player in college (remember most start at 20/21 here) they have the option of signing a contract as a free agent with a team that gives them the best chance to succeed.

If I was you, I might want to try and make a Canadian Jr A team, hope to get drafted by a Maj Jr Team. Then if you continue to develop into a top goalie awesome. But you will still have options.

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02-20-2013, 11:45 AM
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDreamer View Post
Im 15 a freshman and a goalie playing junior and i have been thinking about which path to travel. I have talked to both major junior and division 1 college teams. I think i would prefer Major Junior but could you guys help me out. Remeber this is from a goalies perspective.
I know that if i choose major junior i wont make the team next year and i would play on there farm team and get called up hopefully for a game or two. If i choose college i would have to find a team maybe in the NAHL or some other league. If you know any good leagues to develop in please share. I have not commited anywhere and i am still looking at options for next year.

Thanks for the help.
If your goal and dream is to make it to the nhl then the fastest way to do so is the CHL or other Jr. A hockey, i have seen alot of players career take a turn for the worst playing in College, Junior A Hockey is more of an NHL feel then anytype of hockey from the atmosphere to the Schedule....look at the best players in the NHL most of them have played in the CHL and praise it...

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03-20-2013, 11:53 AM
  #8
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what everyone is forgetting here is the NCAA can pull a scholarship at anytime...Not many go right out of high school they want you to playJunior somewheres usually until your 19...so thats two years where you have to pay everything if not you can loose your eligibility...then they can also tell you what you will be taking in university for courses and how many you can take...so after your done with scholarship who pays for you to go back ad finish off your communications degree? look at the drafts over the last 10 yrs and see how many draft NCAA players are actually playing NHL and then check Major Jr and see how many....you cant compare how the NCAA and Major Jr prepare you for pro hockey...there is no comparsion----lack of games...big ice surfaces...wearing cages...this is a disadvantage to moving forward with your carreer...most that make it from NCAA leave programs for minor pro or Major JR before their education is finished..imo

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05-13-2013, 02:44 PM
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And what percentage of major junior players actually end up playing in the NHL? NCAA is really catching up with the major junior league in terms of skill as well. The free education, even if it isn't a full four years if you get dropped is still better than nothing.

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05-13-2013, 03:05 PM
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Depends, really. If I were a top prospect, I'd probably go the major junior route through the OHL (their territory covers Illinois, right?), as that seems to be the quicker path to the NHL.

If I were a mid- or low-level prospect, though, I'd almost assuredly go the USHL route in high school and then D-1 in college. Develop my game but keep the education routes alive for the very likely possibility that I don't have a future in professional hockey beyond the ECHL.

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05-16-2013, 03:52 PM
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Dump and Chase
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bojyea View Post
And what percentage of major junior players actually end up playing in the NHL? NCAA is really catching up with the major junior league in terms of skill as well. The free education, even if it isn't a full four years if you get dropped is still better than nothing.
There is a pretty awesome article that puts that all in perspective on the OMHA site.

Chances of Making it in Pro Hockey

The article boils down the numbers from the 30,000 kids who played some form of minor hockey in Ontario with a 1975 birth year. 1975 is considered the best crop ever out of Ontario.

Highlights:
- by bantam that 30,000 number had eroded into 22,000
- 232 of those were drafted into the ohl and only 105 of those ever played a single game in the ohl
- of those 105, only 90 finished their 3 or 4 years of eligibility
- only 42 played NCAA Division I hockey


It also goes into the fact that the full ride scholarship landscape has changed a ton in the 20 years since these 75's were eligible.

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06-25-2013, 03:06 PM
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El Cohiba
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Depends on how good you are to be honest


Last edited by El Cohiba: 06-25-2013 at 03:32 PM.
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06-26-2013, 03:52 PM
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If you're a sure thing, sell out to a top CHL team.

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06-28-2013, 04:44 PM
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Rocko604
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IMO, if you weren't drafted my a Major Junior club, go the Jr. A route. It allows you to keep your NCAA eligibility, and if you do well, you could sign with a CHL club later on if you don't want to go to school.

Since you mentioned the NAHL, I'm assuming you're American. USHL would obviously be the first choice, but I'd also look at the BCHL and AJHL as well.

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07-17-2013, 05:01 PM
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12Gage09
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If you want to make it to the NHL the better route is Major Junior. do you ever look and see how many guys are draft from the OHL, WHL, QMJHL which are all part of the CHL. the American players who come to play for the London Knights always say it is a better league(faster pace, more skill, pro style schedule). if you play Major Junior you are not eligible for NCAA hockey but for every year you play in the CHL you get free tuition to Canadian college or university. I've tried to watch NCAA hockey and it is sooo boring. Even as a goalie, it is still better to play Junior B while you wait for your turn in the CHL

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07-24-2013, 09:34 AM
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Ballroomblitz
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It is now up to 30 to 35% of NHL players have come from NCAA, so while i agree for some the Major Junior route is faster route to the pro's it is not the only route by any means. NCAA gives you an education up front, allows a player to mature a bit later for those that require that while still offering an opportunity to move on to the Pro leagues.

The concern with Major Junior for some is that the education package is good for 18 months after playing Major Junior hockey so if you are no longer eligible to play you better take them up on the education package right away and not try out other leagues or forfeit your hard earned education package.

No one choice is right for all players, just be careful on your decision and weigh all options before making the final decision.

We are currently making the choice right now with both firm offers for Major Junior and NCAA, after thinking long and hard we are leaning one way but the choice is difficult seeing both routes have their advantages and disadvantages.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12Gage09 View Post
If you want to make it to the NHL the better route is Major Junior. do you ever look and see how many guys are draft from the OHL, WHL, QMJHL which are all part of the CHL. the American players who come to play for the London Knights always say it is a better league(faster pace, more skill, pro style schedule). if you play Major Junior you are not eligible for NCAA hockey but for every year you play in the CHL you get free tuition to Canadian college or university. I've tried to watch NCAA hockey and it is sooo boring. Even as a goalie, it is still better to play Junior B while you wait for your turn in the CHL

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07-25-2013, 09:47 AM
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CHL would be my choice.

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07-25-2013, 09:55 AM
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[QUOTE=Buggie;62029655]what everyone is forgetting here is the NCAA can pull a scholarship at anytime...Not many go right out of high school they want you to playJunior somewheres usually until your 19...so thats two years where you have to pay everything if not you can loose your eligibility...then they can also tell you what you will be taking in university for courses and how many you can take...so after your done with scholarship who pays for you to go back ad finish off your communications degree? look at the drafts over the last 10 yrs and see how many draft NCAA players are actually playing NHL and then check Major Jr and see how many....you cant compare how the NCAA and Major Jr prepare you for pro hockey...there is no comparsion----lack of games...big ice surfaces...wearing cages...this is a disadvantage to moving forward with your carreer...most that make it from NCAA leave programs for minor pro or Major JR before their education is finished..imo

Louis LeBlanc Danny Kristo and Brock Trotter all say hi. Allthree of those kids left NCAA early to move up LeBlanc left Harvard and went to the Q the other 2 left and went to the AHL none of them have yet to make any impact at the pro level. It just doesn't seem to be the best possible route to get to the NHL.

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07-25-2013, 11:54 AM
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Ward Cornell
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[QUOTE=29dryden29;69594063]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buggie View Post
what everyone is forgetting here is the NCAA can pull a scholarship at anytime...Not many go right out of high school they want you to playJunior somewheres usually until your 19...so thats two years where you have to pay everything if not you can loose your eligibility...then they can also tell you what you will be taking in university for courses and how many you can take...so after your done with scholarship who pays for you to go back ad finish off your communications degree? look at the drafts over the last 10 yrs and see how many draft NCAA players are actually playing NHL and then check Major Jr and see how many....you cant compare how the NCAA and Major Jr prepare you for pro hockey...there is no comparsion----lack of games...big ice surfaces...wearing cages...this is a disadvantage to moving forward with your carreer...most that make it from NCAA leave programs for minor pro or Major JR before their education is finished..imo

Louis LeBlanc Danny Kristo and Brock Trotter all say hi. Allthree of those kids left NCAA early to move up LeBlanc left Harvard and went to the Q the other 2 left and went to the AHL none of them have yet to make any impact at the pro level. It just doesn't seem to be the best possible route to get to the NHL.
What stats I would like to see is for the typical student in HS and their grad rate from a college or university compared to a CHL player. I suspect the CHL player will be higher than just a typical student!
This nonsense of how CHL players don't get an education is laughable!

As for the OP questions which route to take....go with your heart and remember first and foremost it's a game and enjoy yourself!

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07-25-2013, 07:04 PM
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Cfriss216
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12Gage09 View Post
If you want to make it to the NHL the better route is Major Junior. do you ever look and see how many guys are draft from the OHL, WHL, QMJHL which are all part of the CHL. the American players who come to play for the London Knights always say it is a better league(faster pace, more skill, pro style schedule). if you play Major Junior you are not eligible for NCAA hockey but for every year you play in the CHL you get free tuition to Canadian college or university. I've tried to watch NCAA hockey and it is sooo boring. Even as a goalie, it is still better to play Junior B while you wait for your turn in the CHL
I said the same thing to my friends here in the states, trying to argue why the CHL is better than the NCAA. Then I really started watching more NCAA games this past year and noticed that they play a pretty good game as well. The CHL is the better brand of hockey, and pumps out the top prospects every year for the draft, but the middle of the pack CHL kids drafted every year aren't any better than some of the talent in the NCAA. The best players in Junior hockey gather for team Canadas national junior camp and sometimes lose to CIS teams. Those same CIS teams play exhibition games against NCAA teams at the beginning of the year and get smoked by the NCAA Div 1 teams. There is a lot of players playing NCAA/USHL hockey that could play major junior. Especially the elite americans in the league. I would like to see you say that to Jacob Trouba, Johnny Gaudreau, Derek Stepan, Mike Cammalleri, Riley Barber, or hell...even John Teows, just to name a few..the NCAA is easily the next best developmental league under Major Junior. http://collegehockeyinc.com/in-the-nhl

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08-01-2013, 02:52 AM
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I said the same thing to my friends here in the states, trying to argue why the CHL is better than the NCAA. Then I really started watching more NCAA games this past year and noticed that they play a pretty good game as well. The CHL is the better brand of hockey, and pumps out the top prospects every year for the draft, but the middle of the pack CHL kids drafted every year aren't any better than some of the talent in the NCAA. The best players in Junior hockey gather for team Canadas national junior camp and sometimes lose to CIS teams. Those same CIS teams play exhibition games against NCAA teams at the beginning of the year and get smoked by the NCAA Div 1 teams. There is a lot of players playing NCAA/USHL hockey that could play major junior. Especially the elite americans in the league. I would like to see you say that to Jacob Trouba, Johnny Gaudreau, Derek Stepan, Mike Cammalleri, Riley Barber, or hell...even John Teows, just to name a few..the NCAA is easily the next best developmental league under Major Junior. http://collegehockeyinc.com/in-the-nhl
I agree, NCAA is the 2nd best development league After the CHL. I have seen a few NCAA games and it isn't as exciting as junior. I have no doubt NCAA is way better than CIS at every sport. CIS is made up of CHLers who don't get drafted and NCAA does have NHL bound players. The guys you mentioned are good players but every player who has come to my hometown London Knights from the NCAA or some other league in the US always says the CHL is better. CHLers can be in the NHL at 18, NCAA it must be like 22? Hypothetically, if there was a way to have a CHL team and NCAA team play when they are around the same age, i think the CHL would win the majority of the time

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08-02-2013, 07:50 PM
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IMO, if you weren't drafted my a Major Junior club, go the Jr. A route. It allows you to keep your NCAA eligibility, and if you do well, you could sign with a CHL club later on if you don't want to go to school.

Since you mentioned the NAHL, I'm assuming you're American. USHL would obviously be the first choice, but I'd also look at the BCHL and AJHL as well.
What are the major differences between the USHL, NAHL, BCHL and AJHL? Just curious, because someone that I know was the 1st overall pick in the USHL draft, but he decided to play in the NAHL. I don't know how that decision was made, but I'm assuming the Div1 college that he plays for now could have had a say in it.

EDIT: My mistake. He was actually drafted 1st overall after playing a season in the NAHL. He decided to stay in the NAHL for another year before committing to college.

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08-03-2013, 03:48 AM
  #23
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Originally Posted by KJS14 View Post
What are the major differences between the USHL, NAHL, BCHL and AJHL? Just curious, because someone that I know was the 1st overall pick in the USHL draft, but he decided to play in the NAHL. I don't know how that decision was made, but I'm assuming the Div1 college that he plays for now could have had a say in it.

EDIT: My mistake. He was actually drafted 1st overall after playing a season in the NAHL. He decided to stay in the NAHL for another year before committing to college.
Google that... USHL=Top Junior League in the US... NAHL=2nd Best Junior League in the US behind the USHL... BCHL(6th best development league) and AJHL are the Junior A leagues of the provinces of British Columbia and Alberta... differences is probably just the the quality of the players/teams. CHL is the best development league and always drafts the most players. If players aren't good enough for one league, there are other leagues they can play in

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08-13-2013, 07:38 AM
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Also remember goalies take longer to develop than skaters. NCAA allows goalie much more time to do just that. It really seems the CHL hasn't really done much over the last decade to develop any quality netminders.

And if college isn't right, you can still transfer over to a CHL team...but you can NOT go from CHL to NCAA.

As long as your grades are good and you understand how important it is to have a solid education under your belt, the NCAA is probably your safest best.

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11-24-2013, 09:46 AM
  #25
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nice article concerning this topic form Hockey Now:

http://hockeynow.ca/college/goaltending-grads

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