Why identify the skating ability of best players in IP2 so they can play on “lines ” in games

Posted: December 2, 2013 in Uncategorized

A parent asked a great question about why we are trying to identify the top 1/3 of skaters on each team so that they play against the top skaters on other teams during games. Below is my answer which appears in the comments section of the blog:

GREAT QUESTION!!! There is a significant range in skating ability in IP2. The hope is that if we can identify the better skaters and put them on ice against the better skaters on the other team then they will be more challenged and will be forced to pass as part of play. During games for the last two years our more developed skaters seldom passed the puck to less developed skaters. The net result was that some skaters never had a chance to touch the puck or truly be part of the play.Next year players will be sorted to Novice A,B and C for the same reasons. This is not an attempt to identify or reward players – it is designed to balance the playing field (ice) so that all players can share in the excitement of the games.This will not be a perfect system since some nights there will be fewer players at the games but at least it is an opportunity to enhance the playing experience of our players. Feel free to email me if you want to chat more.

As always I want to hear from parents. Hockey is for most families a significant part of their whole family life for many years. Many of you have already experienced the fun of early morning practices, team meals and tournaments. Families have to commit not only financially but also in time and emotion to this great game. Many of our parents will go on to coach or manage teams – some already do for their older children. I think it is critical that people know why decisions are made. That is why the blog tries to explain not only what we do in practices but why. I  always consider parent’s opinions.I really do enjoy hearing from parents.This decision to group players came from a parent who was in one of the Toronto area programs where this worked well. My decisions need to reflect Hockey Canada and NMHA guidelines and my own personal opinions as to what is most successful to enhance everyone’s hockey experience. 

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