Youth Hockey

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Youth Hockey

Post by eddieshore » Wed Jun 08 11:38 am

(MODs feel free to move this to appropriate topic if available)

Interesting article... http://www.startribune.com/sports/12342 ... page=1&c=y

Checking ban for peewee hockey has governing bodies at odds...

Wondering what other fellow hockey parents or members who've gone through the youth hockey system think about this.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by team22tank » Wed Jun 08 12:02 pm

I personally would say leave things the way they are. I think peewees is a good age to learn to check.

Also, a lot of 9th graders who play JV or Varsity would only have one year of checking under their belt in 8th grade. I don't think that is good for development to be thrown in with little checking experience with players who are 2-3 years older, faster, stronger, ect.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Toe Blake » Wed Jun 08 1:03 pm

The article touches on my issue with checking in youth hockey. It's all about making a big hit, everything else be damned. The idea of checking is to gain possession. I see it over and over.......a kid makes a huge hit and goes down with the player he hit thereby taking himself out of the play too. What has that accomplished? The smartest players know how to ride an opponent off the puck and either gain possession themselves or stay on their feet to stay in the play. I'd be OK with leaving checking in peewee hockey as long as coaches started doing a better job teaching checking for possession.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by team22tank » Wed Jun 08 1:16 pm

I think it is also important to learn all of the components that go along with the physical game, like keeping your head up and seeing the ice and also how smaller players learn to adapt. I remember in college and hs guys never threw hits and they also never took hits, almost never.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by PrideOnIce » Wed Jun 08 1:52 pm

Toe Blake wrote:The article touches on my issue with checking in youth hockey. It's all about making a big hit, everything else be damned. The idea of checking is to gain possession. I see it over and over.......a kid makes a huge hit and goes down with the player he hit thereby taking himself out of the play too. What has that accomplished? The smartest players know how to ride an opponent off the puck and either gain possession themselves or stay on their feet to stay in the play. I'd be OK with leaving checking in peewee hockey as long as coaches started doing a better job teaching checking for possession.


+1

The biggest factors in this issue are the coaches, the referees and to a lesser degree the parents (fans). The coaches for being idiots and insisting on the check. (Player A has the puck and passes to his teammate, the opposing player is told to put a hit on Player A, no matter what.)
The referees for leaving some rules open to interpretation. (Contact to the head is contact to the head and checking from behind is checking from behind.)
As for the parents (fans), the ones that encourage and cheer for the annihilation of an opposing player are complete idiots. My favorite are the ones screaming for it from the stands.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by streakygopher » Wed Jun 08 2:08 pm

Maybe I'm in a minority here, but I don't think checking is necessary in Peewees. If anything, it takes focus away from skating and skills. There's no reason youth hockey can't allow for aggressive physical play without checking, much in the same way women's college hockey plays the game. This way, positioning and separation from the puck can be taught without the physical blows that often hurt the kids who haven't matured. I also think tackle football really doesn't need to start until 7th or 8th grade.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by WPoSforever » Wed Jun 08 4:20 pm

I would argue that if they want to make a change they should allow checking earlier. If you could introduce checking even mites and teach them how to check properly and also how to take a hit, it would have many benefits. They are too small to seriously injure each other at this age and I think it would remove some of the 'only big hits' mentality when they get to peewees and bantams since they have been checking for years by that time.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by stan_5150 » Wed Jun 08 6:00 pm

I'm all for keeping the checking age at Pee Wees. As a coach we've taught angling opponents in mites, more body contact (i.e. holding your position/holding your ice) in squirts, and now in pee wees how play the puck first and then follow through on the body.

In fact we stress to the kids about NOT trying to go for the big hit because of penalties, putting yourself out of position, and the most important thing; don't try to hurt anybody. We had a couple of kids last year who just didn't get it and would put their hands up everytime they got pulled into the box. I'd just shake my head.

So how do you coach a 2nd year peewee how not to check?
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by eddieshore » Wed Jun 08 11:03 pm

stan_5150 wrote:I'm all for keeping the checking age at Pee Wees. As a coach we've taught angling opponents in mites, more body contact (i.e. holding your position/holding your ice) in squirts, and now in pee wees how play the puck first and then follow through on the body.

In fact we stress to the kids about NOT trying to go for the big hit because of penalties, putting yourself out of position, and the most important thing; don't try to hurt anybody. We had a couple of kids last year who just didn't get it and would put their hands up everytime they got pulled into the box. I'd just shake my head.

So how do you coach a 2nd year peewee how not to check?


Doesn't the checking issue in general seem to be more of a cultural phenomenon that's been created by highlight reels, blood-thirsty fans, overzealous parents and ignorant and/or aggressive coaching to the limit?

I'd love to see youth hockey programs really develop and instill the real purpose of checking in a pure game sense, but I'm not sure how it happens.

My little guy will be going into advanced mites next season and I enjoy listening to everyone's feedback... I love the game but don't know a lot of the in-depth aspects of it and am learning on the fly.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by trixR4kids » Wed Jun 08 11:13 pm

WPoSforever wrote:I would argue that if they want to make a change they should allow checking earlier. If you could introduce checking even mites and teach them how to check properly and also how to take a hit, it would have many benefits. They are too small to seriously injure each other at this age and I think it would remove some of the 'only big hits' mentality when they get to peewees and bantams since they have been checking for years by that time.

I was going to say the exact same thing. They're smaller and can't gain a huge amount of momentum at that age. If you introduce it earlier they will simply have more time to learn how to perform a check properly. As they get older they will realize that the skilled players probably aren't out there trying to kill people for the most part and are simply good at removing players from the puck in a variety of ways (ie: stick lift, poke check, body check all get the job done).

And it's not like players can't just decide to be dirty if you take checking out of the game. If players want to head hunt they'll do it regardless of whether checking is allowed or not. I don't see how taking legal checks out of the game is supposed to prevent this other than it should theoretically minimize the chances of improper hits (which I think can be curbed in a number of ways that still allow checking).

eddieshore wrote:Doesn't the checking issue in general seem to be more of a cultural phenomenon that's been created by highlight reels, blood-thirsty fans, overzealous parents and ignorant and/or aggressive coaching to the limit?

That and Mike Millburry... :roll: (he had an article in USA hockey advocating taking away checking from peewees)
<GophDogFan> yep, so sad... you have a new moment, when your uncle gets mad because you got the best of him. the last straw was when i told him that UND's hockey program is like crystal pepsi: Nobody every liked it.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Larch » Thu Jun 09 1:14 am

As a ref I've been given several chances to voice my opinion and it has always been this. I think they are trying to do the right thing, but they are going about it the wrong way. They are trying to eliminate injury and that's great, but Bantams are bigger, faster and stronger and you are going to allow them to start hitting then? I foresee a lot more injuries at the Bantam level because there is going to be bigger (2nd year) kids hitting smaller (first year) kids. There are going to be those better First-year kids who are going to go straight to the Bantam A team from the Pee Wee A team where they were the best and not getting hit and they are going to come up against better players than they saw at Pee Wees who have been hitting. I see a lot more disparity in body sizes at the Bantam level than I do in the Pee Wee level. I also see a lot small town teams that have only one team who usually play at the "B" level, yet have decent 2nd year players and now they are going to get a chance to go up against inexperienced first year players who probably aren't quite ready for that, especially if they play for a town that has more than one Bantam level team? I also have a tough time believing that they are going to be able to work with a majority of the pee wee level coaches who will in turn be able to teach the proper technique properly all year long, there are coaches out there who will able to do just that especially at the "A" level, but I think they will be the exception.

I believe their first step should have been more enforcement and to work with us refs to get a better handle on it and to also use a fair-point system for standings like Minnesota does.

The other thing I don't like about it and this is my ref point of view, I believe it opens us up to a lot more criticism from coaches and parents on close plays. The line I've used from time to time is; Just because you think it's a penalty, doesn't make it a penalty. This checking rule is going to have a lot of gray area and I already know I'm going to have coaches, players and parents arguing for a checking penalty against the other team while a similar play by their team earlier or later wasn't or won't be a penalty. We as refs aren't perfect...in fact we are human and there are going to be mistakes and some of us are jackoffs (just like the rest of the human population) but the majority of us do it because we enjoy it and don't sign up for the yelling and insults we get hurled at us. It is occasionally deserved but not to the level that some take it. We aren't WCHA refs. :)

Watch this official USA Hockey video and tell me none of their "legal" body contacts are checks; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-zaNHNI3wc

Finally, (and then I will get off my soapbox) a border town coach told me last year that he heard Minnesota will just opt out of USA Hockey if this rule passed and I thought it to be the most absurd statement in this argument. I asked him how many neighboring state teams he played and if he understood that those games would most likely be off the table since USA Hockey has the general umbrella insurance coverage for those games and doesn't take kindly to non sanctioned teams playing in those situations and would not likely kowtow to Minnesota this time. Also who would do the coaching and reffing seminars for the state and then cover them for the year. Minnesota Hockey is a bigger association within USA Hockey, but not that big.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Elm Grove Gopher » Thu Jun 09 8:13 am

I always thought kids should check earlier; in fact, when I coached, our staff began teaching proper checking technique at the younger levels in practice. These kids, when they moved up and checking was part of the game, checked properly and weren't fazed by it at all, allowing their game to develop without the "fascination" of going for or avoiding the big hit. They understood that checking had to have a purpose, and getting the big hit WASN'T it.


My two cents anyway...

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by stan_5150 » Thu Jun 09 8:24 am

And another thing...... :wink:

Last year knowing that we were going to be checking in Pee Wee's we signed our oldest up for a checking clinic. He was taught well and from all accounts enjoyed himself.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by LeoPohl » Thu Jun 09 12:47 pm

I agree with all those who think that checking should be allowed earlier. From what I remember from Tiny Mites, there weren't any players who could seriously injure anyone. The players had a hard enough time trying to skate, especially while trying to control the puck, and just about everyone fell down when touched because of it. Why people want to wait until some have hit puberty and some havent' to introduce a very important part of the game is beyond me.

My own personal experience with this very issue led me to quit in '93 after someone (I'm not sure exactly who) changed the cut-off date from Sept. 1 to June 1 and were coming down harder on checking. With my birthday being in July, I would have had to spend a third year in squirts, something I did NOT want precisely because of the checking. I also was bigger and stronger for age and could easily absorb any contact. (The officials were pretty liberal with contact. I can't remember many penalties for checking called and there was a lot of it.) However, it took me until I was nearly 16 to hit puberty and my first day of high school I was all of 5'-2" and 90lbs. Had I continued playing under the current proposal, I wouldn't have been introduced to checking until 14 when I was the above size and likely would have been done as soon as I started. Allow kids to learn how to avoid being hit at an earlier age and they'll probably do a better job of it when they're in high school, college, juniors, and pros.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Riff Raff » Thu Jun 09 12:48 pm

If checking is going to be allowed at all in any level of youth hockey, it has to be introduced before Bantams. Many correct reasons listed by multiple posters above are accurate, but to me the one point that rings most true is the fact that by the time kids hit Bantams, some kids have started to develop into young men, and some haven't. I was a late bloomer...I would have been killed in Bantams if I had not learned in Pee Wee's (and younger) how to defend myself and survive on the ice as a smaller guy. Hell, I got pushed around as it was, but would have had no chance without a couple years of practice avoiding contact.

Someone also posted about the coaches responsibility in teaching how to check, avoiding the check, taking possession etc.. This is a huge part of the equation. As a youth coach, I can attest there is a lot more access to resources than before as far as videos from USA Hockey and such that concentracte on these skills, and I think overall coaches are currently improving and will continue to improve on teaching these very important skills. We're not there yet, but I can see improvement.

I applaud the effort to make the game safer, but this is going about it the wrong way.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by LeoPohl » Thu Jun 09 12:56 pm

Riff Raff wrote:If checking is going to be allowed at all in any level of youth hockey, it has to be introduced before Bantams. Many correct reasons listed by multiple posters above are accurate, but to me the one point that rings most true is the fact that by the time kids hit Bantams, some kids have started to develop into young men, and some haven't. I was a late bloomer...I would have been killed in Bantams if I had not learned in Pee Wee's (and younger) how to defend myself and survive on the ice as a smaller guy. Hell, I got pushed around as it was, but would have had no chance without a couple years of practice avoiding contact.

Someone also posted about the coaches responsibility in teaching how to check, avoiding the check, taking possession etc.. This is a huge part of the equation. As a youth coach, I can attest there is a lot more access to resources than before as far as videos from USA Hockey and such that concentracte on these skills, and I think overall coaches are currently improving and will continue to improve on teaching these very important skills. We're not there yet, but I can see improvement.

I applaud the effort to make the game safer, but this is going about it the wrong way.

Posted at pretty much the same time, and I agree 100%.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by trixR4kids » Thu Jun 09 7:40 pm

Larch wrote:As a ref I've been given several chances to voice my opinion and it has always been this. I think they are trying to do the right thing, but they are going about it the wrong way. They are trying to eliminate injury and that's great, but Bantams are bigger, faster and stronger and you are going to allow them to start hitting then? I foresee a lot more injuries at the Bantam level because there is going to be bigger (2nd year) kids hitting smaller (first year) kids. There are going to be those better First-year kids who are going to go straight to the Bantam A team from the Pee Wee A team where they were the best and not getting hit and they are going to come up against better players than they saw at Pee Wees who have been hitting. I see a lot more disparity in body sizes at the Bantam level than I do in the Pee Wee level. I also see a lot small town teams that have only one team who usually play at the "B" level, yet have decent 2nd year players and now they are going to get a chance to go up against inexperienced first year players who probably aren't quite ready for that, especially if they play for a town that has more than one Bantam level team? I also have a tough time believing that they are going to be able to work with a majority of the pee wee level coaches who will in turn be able to teach the proper technique properly all year long, there are coaches out there who will able to do just that especially at the "A" level, but I think they will be the exception.

I believe their first step should have been more enforcement and to work with us refs to get a better handle on it and to also use a fair-point system for standings like Minnesota does.

The other thing I don't like about it and this is my ref point of view, I believe it opens us up to a lot more criticism from coaches and parents on close plays. The line I've used from time to time is; Just because you think it's a penalty, doesn't make it a penalty. This checking rule is going to have a lot of gray area and I already know I'm going to have coaches, players and parents arguing for a checking penalty against the other team while a similar play by their team earlier or later wasn't or won't be a penalty. We as refs aren't perfect...in fact we are human and there are going to be mistakes and some of us are jackoffs (just like the rest of the human population) but the majority of us do it because we enjoy it and don't sign up for the yelling and insults we get hurled at us. It is occasionally deserved but not to the level that some take it. We aren't WCHA refs. :)

Watch this official USA Hockey video and tell me none of their "legal" body contacts are checks; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-zaNHNI3wc

Finally, (and then I will get off my soapbox) a border town coach told me last year that he heard Minnesota will just opt out of USA Hockey if this rule passed and I thought it to be the most absurd statement in this argument. I asked him how many neighboring state teams he played and if he understood that those games would most likely be off the table since USA Hockey has the general umbrella insurance coverage for those games and doesn't take kindly to non sanctioned teams playing in those situations and would not likely kowtow to Minnesota this time. Also who would do the coaching and reffing seminars for the state and then cover them for the year. Minnesota Hockey is a bigger association within USA Hockey, but not that big.

Reffing squirt A games is tough enough because they're already using their body and checking to some extent. I think you're right, it's only going to get worse for us refs and I'm not sure I'm even going to want to ref if they don't allow checking at the peewee age. I think this might potentially drive away a few solid veteran refs and even some young ones like myself who are experienced.
<GophDogFan> yep, so sad... you have a new moment, when your uncle gets mad because you got the best of him. the last straw was when i told him that UND's hockey program is like crystal pepsi: Nobody every liked it.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by team22tank » Thu Jun 09 9:46 pm

trixR4kids wrote:
Larch wrote:As a ref I've been given several chances to voice my opinion and it has always been this. I think they are trying to do the right thing, but they are going about it the wrong way. They are trying to eliminate injury and that's great, but Bantams are bigger, faster and stronger and you are going to allow them to start hitting then? I foresee a lot more injuries at the Bantam level because there is going to be bigger (2nd year) kids hitting smaller (first year) kids. There are going to be those better First-year kids who are going to go straight to the Bantam A team from the Pee Wee A team where they were the best and not getting hit and they are going to come up against better players than they saw at Pee Wees who have been hitting. I see a lot more disparity in body sizes at the Bantam level than I do in the Pee Wee level. I also see a lot small town teams that have only one team who usually play at the "B" level, yet have decent 2nd year players and now they are going to get a chance to go up against inexperienced first year players who probably aren't quite ready for that, especially if they play for a town that has more than one Bantam level team? I also have a tough time believing that they are going to be able to work with a majority of the pee wee level coaches who will in turn be able to teach the proper technique properly all year long, there are coaches out there who will able to do just that especially at the "A" level, but I think they will be the exception.

I believe their first step should have been more enforcement and to work with us refs to get a better handle on it and to also use a fair-point system for standings like Minnesota does.

The other thing I don't like about it and this is my ref point of view, I believe it opens us up to a lot more criticism from coaches and parents on close plays. The line I've used from time to time is; Just because you think it's a penalty, doesn't make it a penalty. This checking rule is going to have a lot of gray area and I already know I'm going to have coaches, players and parents arguing for a checking penalty against the other team while a similar play by their team earlier or later wasn't or won't be a penalty. We as refs aren't perfect...in fact we are human and there are going to be mistakes and some of us are jackoffs (just like the rest of the human population) but the majority of us do it because we enjoy it and don't sign up for the yelling and insults we get hurled at us. It is occasionally deserved but not to the level that some take it. We aren't WCHA refs. :)

Watch this official USA Hockey video and tell me none of their "legal" body contacts are checks; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-zaNHNI3wc

Finally, (and then I will get off my soapbox) a border town coach told me last year that he heard Minnesota will just opt out of USA Hockey if this rule passed and I thought it to be the most absurd statement in this argument. I asked him how many neighboring state teams he played and if he understood that those games would most likely be off the table since USA Hockey has the general umbrella insurance coverage for those games and doesn't take kindly to non sanctioned teams playing in those situations and would not likely kowtow to Minnesota this time. Also who would do the coaching and reffing seminars for the state and then cover them for the year. Minnesota Hockey is a bigger association within USA Hockey, but not that big.

Reffing squirt A games is tough enough because they're already using their body and checking to some extent. I think you're right, it's only going to get worse for us refs and I'm not sure I'm even going to want to ref if they don't allow checking at the peewee age. I think this might potentially drive away a few solid veteran refs and even some young ones like myself who are experienced.


Just out of curiosity how do you get into reffing these days and what does it pay?

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by trixR4kids » Thu Jun 09 11:26 pm

You gotta attend a USA hockey ref seminar and pay something like $40 (annually). Ref gear costs money too. When I reffed in Minneapolis the pay was pretty good. I think I got like $25 for squirt games or something like that. I reffed a JV highschool game here in Milwaukee and made like $50. I remember doing women's games in MN and getting like $35 cash and it was the easiest thing ever.
<GophDogFan> yep, so sad... you have a new moment, when your uncle gets mad because you got the best of him. the last straw was when i told him that UND's hockey program is like crystal pepsi: Nobody every liked it.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Larch » Fri Jun 10 11:48 pm

trixR4kids wrote:You gotta attend a USA hockey ref seminar and pay something like $40 (annually). Ref gear costs money too. When I reffed in Minneapolis the pay was pretty good. I think I got like $25 for squirt games or something like that. I reffed a JV highschool game here in Milwaukee and made like $50. I remember doing women's games in MN and getting like $35 cash and it was the easiest thing ever.


Every association is different in how they pay. My association pays per your ref level no matter what level you ref. It isn't perfect, because you can pay a lot to a ref for a mite game, but us experienced refs try to leave as many of the younger levels to the newer refs only getting involved in tourneys where more refs are required, you also get "better" refs at the Squirt A and Pee Wee B games because we get decent pay. I have reffed in associations that paid on a sliding scale based on youth level and you had a lot of older guys trying to get out of the lower level games because they didn't pay enough, which I hated and wished those refs had gotten out of reffing since I didn't think they were in it for the right reasons. Every High School is different too, I've received $40 for a local JV game to $85 for a girls varsity game (boys too), that required travel time too.

It is a great way for a young kid to make some decent money without having long hours, I wished I had started in College, I would have made the same working a few hours as I did working 8 hours.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by PrideOnIce » Sun Jun 12 11:25 am

Checking development program approved.

http://usahockey.com/Template_Usahockey ... &id=288372
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Larch » Sun Jun 12 12:55 pm

PrideOnIce wrote:Checking development program approved.

http://usahockey.com/Template_Usahockey ... &id=288372


Formally approved at least. this was forgone conclusion, they've been softening us up since last fall and I have seen nothing formal that ever argued the other way in USA Magazine or any other publication. They even had an article for removing checking on USCHO they other day.

Yet another case of the big shots sitting up on their hill in Colorado Springs dictating to the masses rather than working with and listening to us. I know there were many for the change, but the ones against were largely and wholly ignored. It will be interesting to see how this plays out. Herb Brooks picking the team his way makes sense more and more the longer I deal with USA Hockey.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by trixR4kids » Sun Jun 12 1:06 pm

UGH. Not sure if I even want to ref next year, at least not peewees. At least we'll have something to talk about in the recertification seminar :roll:
<GophDogFan> yep, so sad... you have a new moment, when your uncle gets mad because you got the best of him. the last straw was when i told him that UND's hockey program is like crystal pepsi: Nobody every liked it.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by stan_5150 » Mon Jun 13 7:37 am

So USA Hockey has voted - now I wonder what Minnesota Hockey is going to say?
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by PrideOnIce » Mon Jun 13 8:45 am

I'd be interested to hear the thoughts of anyone (especially you refs) who looked through, read and maybe watched the USA Hockey video on the changed proposal. From what I read and watched, it does not seem like much of a "rule" change.
"My goal was to remind people that Americans talking about socialism in the 21st century was a luxury paid for by the successes of capitalism in the 20th. And that while inequality is a huge problem, the best way to increase everyone’s share of pie is to make the pie bigger, not to dismantle the bakery." - Garry Kasparov
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by trixR4kids » Mon Jun 13 1:23 pm

stan_5150 wrote:So USA Hockey has voted - now I wonder what Minnesota Hockey is going to say?

Pretty sure they're going to go along with it... Minnesota hockey is not going to just break off from USA hockey. Someone addressed this above.

PrideOnIce wrote:I'd be interested to hear the thoughts of anyone (especially you refs) who looked through, read and maybe watched the USA Hockey video on the changed proposal. From what I read and watched, it does not seem like much of a "rule" change.

If you post it I'd be happy to give my opinion when I have time. I didn't see it posted anywhere on their site but I didn't look all that hard.
<GophDogFan> yep, so sad... you have a new moment, when your uncle gets mad because you got the best of him. the last straw was when i told him that UND's hockey program is like crystal pepsi: Nobody every liked it.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by PrideOnIce » Mon Jun 13 2:21 pm

Points of emphasis,
"The program includes the following elements:
It encourages more body contact in the pre-body checking age categories by providing more training and support for coaches and referees; and encouraging more legal body contact in the pre-body checking age categories through “Point of Emphasis” rule #1 passed by the Board.
It tightens the standard of play for intimidation hits in the legal body checking age categories. Beginning in the 2011-12 season, legal body checking in games will begin at the Bantam age level (ages 13-14).
Beginning in 2011-12, each USA Hockey coach will be required to take an age-specific training module which will provide training information consistent with long-term athlete and childhood development principles for the age category the coach will be engaged with. Each module will include training information for body contact and checking.
Each season, USA Hockey officials attend clinics that review points of emphasis relating to the standard of play. These 2011-12 clinics will focus on allowing more body contact consistent with the rules in pre-checking age categories and a tighter standard of play for roughing, cross-checking, boarding, charging, high-sticking and other intimidation hits in the legal body checking divisions.
USA Hockey will monitor the on-ice management of games with regular reports from local referee-in-chiefs, coach-in-chiefs and Association Coaching and Education (ACE) administrators to USA Hockey's national office staff in Colorado Springs.
USA Hockey will conduct research on the effect of the Progressive Checking Skill Development Program on risk reduction and skill development. The results of the research will be published when completed.
The Board also passed rules that prohibit any check that comes in contact with the head or neck. The goal of this rule is to make the player more responsible for actions that make contact to the head or neck similar to rules now in place for stick infractions to the head."

Video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-zaNHNI ... e=youtu.be
"My goal was to remind people that Americans talking about socialism in the 21st century was a luxury paid for by the successes of capitalism in the 20th. And that while inequality is a huge problem, the best way to increase everyone’s share of pie is to make the pie bigger, not to dismantle the bakery." - Garry Kasparov
Friedrich August von Hayek, 1899-1992 Milton Friedman 1912-2006
02/06/1911-06/05/2004

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Larch » Mon Jun 13 9:25 pm

PrideOnIce wrote:Points of emphasis,
"The program includes the following elements:
It encourages more body contact in the pre-body checking age categories by providing more training and support for coaches and referees; and encouraging more legal body contact in the pre-body checking age categories through “Point of Emphasis” rule #1 passed by the Board.
It tightens the standard of play for intimidation hits in the legal body checking age categories. Beginning in the 2011-12 season, legal body checking in games will begin at the Bantam age level (ages 13-14).
Beginning in 2011-12, each USA Hockey coach will be required to take an age-specific training module which will provide training information consistent with long-term athlete and childhood development principles for the age category the coach will be engaged with. Each module will include training information for body contact and checking.
Each season, USA Hockey officials attend clinics that review points of emphasis relating to the standard of play. These 2011-12 clinics will focus on allowing more body contact consistent with the rules in pre-checking age categories and a tighter standard of play for roughing, cross-checking, boarding, charging, high-sticking and other intimidation hits in the legal body checking divisions.
USA Hockey will monitor the on-ice management of games with regular reports from local referee-in-chiefs, coach-in-chiefs and Association Coaching and Education (ACE) administrators to USA Hockey's national office staff in Colorado Springs.
USA Hockey will conduct research on the effect of the Progressive Checking Skill Development Program on risk reduction and skill development. The results of the research will be published when completed.
The Board also passed rules that prohibit any check that comes in contact with the head or neck. The goal of this rule is to make the player more responsible for actions that make contact to the head or neck similar to rules now in place for stick infractions to the head."

Video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-zaNHNI ... e=youtu.be


I posted the video in my long winded post as well.

As a ref, there is going to be a lot of gray area on what is a check and what isn't. It's going to be what Squirt A has become but on steroids. A check to you and me, might not be a check to the next guy, especially depending on the angle. Somebody said to me it will be like calling a girls game, to which I answer yes and no. It will be the same set of ideas, but Pee Wee's is faster, yes even than a normal (as opposed to an all-star team) 14U game. I did a girls high school game last year and then a Pee Wee A game the next night, they were faster than the two girls High School teams. I think there is going to be a lot of trouble the first year. At the beginning people are going to try and be patient with it, but I think towards the end of the season is when it is going to get ugly.

The ref clinics are maybe going to be more interesting for us older refs this year.

Erik

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by trixR4kids » Mon Jun 13 11:38 pm

Larch wrote:
PrideOnIce wrote:Points of emphasis,
"The program includes the following elements:
It encourages more body contact in the pre-body checking age categories by providing more training and support for coaches and referees; and encouraging more legal body contact in the pre-body checking age categories through “Point of Emphasis” rule #1 passed by the Board.
It tightens the standard of play for intimidation hits in the legal body checking age categories. Beginning in the 2011-12 season, legal body checking in games will begin at the Bantam age level (ages 13-14).
Beginning in 2011-12, each USA Hockey coach will be required to take an age-specific training module which will provide training information consistent with long-term athlete and childhood development principles for the age category the coach will be engaged with. Each module will include training information for body contact and checking.
Each season, USA Hockey officials attend clinics that review points of emphasis relating to the standard of play. These 2011-12 clinics will focus on allowing more body contact consistent with the rules in pre-checking age categories and a tighter standard of play for roughing, cross-checking, boarding, charging, high-sticking and other intimidation hits in the legal body checking divisions.
USA Hockey will monitor the on-ice management of games with regular reports from local referee-in-chiefs, coach-in-chiefs and Association Coaching and Education (ACE) administrators to USA Hockey's national office staff in Colorado Springs.
USA Hockey will conduct research on the effect of the Progressive Checking Skill Development Program on risk reduction and skill development. The results of the research will be published when completed.
The Board also passed rules that prohibit any check that comes in contact with the head or neck. The goal of this rule is to make the player more responsible for actions that make contact to the head or neck similar to rules now in place for stick infractions to the head."

Video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-zaNHNI ... e=youtu.be


I posted the video in my long winded post as well.

As a ref, there is going to be a lot of gray area on what is a check and what isn't. It's going to be what Squirt A has become but on steroids. A check to you and me, might not be a check to the next guy, especially depending on the angle. Somebody said to me it will be like calling a girls game, to which I answer yes and no. It will be the same set of ideas, but Pee Wee's is faster, yes even than a normal (as opposed to an all-star team) 14U game. I did a girls high school game last year and then a Pee Wee A game the next night, they were faster than the two girls High School teams. I think there is going to be a lot of trouble the first year. At the beginning people are going to try and be patient with it, but I think towards the end of the season is when it is going to get ugly.

The ref clinics are maybe going to be more interesting for us older refs this year.

Erik

Oh yeah. If a bigger kid legally separates a player from the puck but is bigger and knocks a small kid down, would you have to call it a check? In that one play they show Datsyuk has more intention of playing the body or at least getting in the way of the opponent. If someone falls down there then everyone will be screaming about a phantom checking call.

And yeah I think this will be worse than when the original standards of play came into effect back in 2006 I believe. That made things very confusing and that didn't allow a whole lot of room for interpretation. It's a lot easier to call a hook nowadays. The issue with these new rules is that there's a huge gray area and it leaves a lot of room for interpretation. It will be interesting to see how the good refs adjust to this. Unfortunately there are very few good hockey refs in WI.
<GophDogFan> yep, so sad... you have a new moment, when your uncle gets mad because you got the best of him. the last straw was when i told him that UND's hockey program is like crystal pepsi: Nobody every liked it.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by stan_5150 » Tue Jun 14 10:33 am

USA Hockey will have to do a better job at the coaches clinics this fall with explaning this. God knows that some of these "clinics" have been pretty lame in the past.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by team22tank » Tue Jun 14 10:44 am

Are things really getting that out of hand at the pee wee level?

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by sunbone » Tue Jun 14 11:51 am

Man this is stupid. Checking is a part of the game. What is the next step, no checking for anybody under 18? Enforce the rules on the illegal hits in Pee Wees and younger so these kids learn how to deliver and receive hits. If you don't want your kid getting hit don't enroll them in contact sports. Just another step in the wussification of kids in this country.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by PrideOnIce » Tue Jun 14 12:00 pm

team22tank wrote:Are things really getting that out of hand at the pee wee level?


This is not a condemnation of all coaches and officials, most of the time they are great. I can only speak from my observations, but the biggest issue was the lack of enforcement of existing rules. By coaches and officials.

The biggest issues, contact to the head, checking from behind, the blind side shot to the head, late hits, and boarding.

We had a games where the players with the puck in open ice would get drilled from behind and there was no call. It happened enough times that I asked the district Head official one day if it was CFB. His answer was it depends. I said on what? He gave me an answer so I asked him to come to one of our practices so he could show the boys how to hit from behind and NOT get called for it. He said we didn't want to do that.

The other coach on the team sent an email to the District Director of Officials, who sent him a "memo" he had just received from MN Hockey. This from an organization that does not want to eliminate checking. Here it is.

Date: December 11, 2010
To: All Minnesota USA Hockey officials
From:XXXX
MHOA President & MN Hockey Director of Officiating
Re: Concerns about the number of concussions
Dear Fellow officials:
Over the last few years the numbers of concussions that are occurring in the game of hockey are
on the rise. This is a great concern to the safety committee of MN Hockey. I have been asked by
the chair of the safety committee, Hal Tearse, to help focus more attention on hits leading to
concussions, specifically checking from behind penalties and body contact that results in head
contact. I want to stress the importance of assessing the proper penalty for hits in the back (CFB)
and hits to the head. These hits need to stop in order to help prevent the risk of concussion and
other serious injury. If a player is checked from behind, regardless of location on the ice, a
checking from behind penalty must be assessed. If a player checks an opponent and the hands or
stick make contact above the shoulders a head contact penalty must be assessed. It is not our job
to interpret neither the “intent” of the hit nor the severity of the hit based on outcome but to
enforce the rules that are in the rule book. We must be consistent in the calling of these penalties.
If you were to put yourself in the position of the player being hit, I think we may all be more apt
to assess the appropriate penalty. There is no room in the game of hockey for dangerous hits.
There may be concern from some officials about the reaction of coaches for assessing these types
of penalties. Coaches will be informed of the new emphasis that we are placing on check from
behind, head contact and in general dangerous hits. Coaches will be asked to support officials
and their calling of these penalties to keep the participants safe. I understand that there are many
factors that affect the increase in concussions but we feel that this is a first positive step to help
curb the injuries. It will take some time to educate coaches however we need to stand firm in our
enforcement of the rules as they are designed to protect all participants.
I want to thank you in advance for your help to make the game of hockey safer.
Respectfully,


After this we asked the refs their interpretation of CFB and Contact to the Head before the games. One pair of officials, one said "it depends" the other said "we just got a memo and they must be called."

Here is one question I've posed to numerous other coaches.

If your player two hand chops another player in the back of the legs and is not called for the slash, do you give them a high five and say nice swing when they come back to the bench? Most say of course not.

If your player lights up another player with the big crushing hit to the head and neck and is not called, do you give them a great hit pat on the head when they come to the bench? Many get an embarrassed look on their face.

Why is it different?
"My goal was to remind people that Americans talking about socialism in the 21st century was a luxury paid for by the successes of capitalism in the 20th. And that while inequality is a huge problem, the best way to increase everyone’s share of pie is to make the pie bigger, not to dismantle the bakery." - Garry Kasparov
Friedrich August von Hayek, 1899-1992 Milton Friedman 1912-2006
02/06/1911-06/05/2004

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by team22tank » Tue Jun 14 12:14 pm

Based on that it sounds like the problem lies with the officials and the bureaucracies running the show. Checking from behind should be anything from behind regardless of where on the ice. What are the penalties for a checking from behind? When I was playing it was 2 and 10. Are they issuing a game suspension like the NCAA, these days at the youth level?

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by trixR4kids » Tue Jun 14 2:56 pm

PrideOnIce wrote:
team22tank wrote:Are things really getting that out of hand at the pee wee level?


This is not a condemnation of all coaches and officials, most of the time they are great. I can only speak from my observations, but the biggest issue was the lack of enforcement of existing rules. By coaches and officials.

The biggest issues, contact to the head, checking from behind, the blind side shot to the head, late hits, and boarding.

We had a games where the players with the puck in open ice would get drilled from behind and there was no call. It happened enough times that I asked the district Head official one day if it was CFB. His answer was it depends. I said on what? He gave me an answer so I asked him to come to one of our practices so he could show the boys how to hit from behind and NOT get called for it. He said we didn't want to do that.

The other coach on the team sent an email to the District Director of Officials, who sent him a "memo" he had just received from MN Hockey. This from an organization that does not want to eliminate checking. Here it is.

Date: December 11, 2010
To: All Minnesota USA Hockey officials
From:XXXX
MHOA President & MN Hockey Director of Officiating
Re: Concerns about the number of concussions
Dear Fellow officials:
Over the last few years the numbers of concussions that are occurring in the game of hockey are
on the rise. This is a great concern to the safety committee of MN Hockey. I have been asked by
the chair of the safety committee, Hal Tearse, to help focus more attention on hits leading to
concussions, specifically checking from behind penalties and body contact that results in head
contact. I want to stress the importance of assessing the proper penalty for hits in the back (CFB)
and hits to the head. These hits need to stop in order to help prevent the risk of concussion and
other serious injury. If a player is checked from behind, regardless of location on the ice, a
checking from behind penalty must be assessed. If a player checks an opponent and the hands or
stick make contact above the shoulders a head contact penalty must be assessed. It is not our job
to interpret neither the “intent” of the hit nor the severity of the hit based on outcome but to
enforce the rules that are in the rule book. We must be consistent in the calling of these penalties.
If you were to put yourself in the position of the player being hit, I think we may all be more apt
to assess the appropriate penalty. There is no room in the game of hockey for dangerous hits.
There may be concern from some officials about the reaction of coaches for assessing these types
of penalties. Coaches will be informed of the new emphasis that we are placing on check from
behind, head contact and in general dangerous hits. Coaches will be asked to support officials
and their calling of these penalties to keep the participants safe. I understand that there are many
factors that affect the increase in concussions but we feel that this is a first positive step to help
curb the injuries. It will take some time to educate coaches however we need to stand firm in our
enforcement of the rules as they are designed to protect all participants.
I want to thank you in advance for your help to make the game of hockey safer.
Respectfully,


After this we asked the refs their interpretation of CFB and Contact to the Head before the games. One pair of officials, one said "it depends" the other said "we just got a memo and they must be called."

Here is one question I've posed to numerous other coaches.

If your player two hand chops another player in the back of the legs and is not called for the slash, do you give them a high five and say nice swing when they come back to the bench? Most say of course not.

If your player lights up another player with the big crushing hit to the head and neck and is not called, do you give them a great hit pat on the head when they come to the bench? Many get an embarrassed look on their face.

Why is it different?

What district is this?
<GophDogFan> yep, so sad... you have a new moment, when your uncle gets mad because you got the best of him. the last straw was when i told him that UND's hockey program is like crystal pepsi: Nobody every liked it.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by PrideOnIce » Tue Jun 14 3:38 pm

3,5,10,15
"My goal was to remind people that Americans talking about socialism in the 21st century was a luxury paid for by the successes of capitalism in the 20th. And that while inequality is a huge problem, the best way to increase everyone’s share of pie is to make the pie bigger, not to dismantle the bakery." - Garry Kasparov
Friedrich August von Hayek, 1899-1992 Milton Friedman 1912-2006
02/06/1911-06/05/2004

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Larch » Tue Jun 14 10:43 pm

team22tank wrote:Based on that it sounds like the problem lies with the officials...


This is where I take offense. Yes, I try to call every head contact that I see, however, have you ever officiated a game? It's not as cut and dried as you think. I had coach yell at me because I didn't call head contact when his player tried to avoid getting checked and ducked right into the body of the other player which stunned his player and put him on the ice for awhile, but not out of the game. Not everybody understands or sees the same game when they are watching the same game.

There will always be a human element to the game and none of us are perfect, spectators or refs.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Wed Jun 15 8:08 am

Heard Louie talking with Barrero about this ruling last night. I continue to be amazed by the number of old-school players and hockey guys who support this change, including Lou and Brian Burke.

I started out opposed to it, but as I read more and more, I've come to support it. It won't impact my kid 'cause he moves to Bantams next season, but I'd support it either way.

The evidence that Dr. Stuart from Mayo has presented makes a convincing case that there are physiological reasons why 12 year olds should not be checking yet. Also, the evidecne from the Quebec youth league experiments are pretty convincing too.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by team22tank » Wed Jun 15 8:21 am

Larch wrote:
team22tank wrote:Based on that it sounds like the problem lies with the officials...


This is where I take offense. Yes, I try to call every head contact that I see, however, have you ever officiated a game? It's not as cut and dried as you think. I had coach yell at me because I didn't call head contact when his player tried to avoid getting checked and ducked right into the body of the other player which stunned his player and put him on the ice for awhile, but not out of the game. Not everybody understands or sees the same game when they are watching the same game.

There will always be a human element to the game and none of us are perfect, spectators or refs.


Is this what it feels like when someone takes what you say out of context? :lol:

I was responding directly to PrideOnIce's post and the run around he seemed to be getting from different points of authority and some of the inconsistencies in answers he was receiving from refs. That's all.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Larch » Wed Jun 15 9:37 pm

team22tank wrote:
Larch wrote:
team22tank wrote:Based on that it sounds like the problem lies with the officials...


This is where I take offense. Yes, I try to call every head contact that I see, however, have you ever officiated a game? It's not as cut and dried as you think. I had coach yell at me because I didn't call head contact when his player tried to avoid getting checked and ducked right into the body of the other player which stunned his player and put him on the ice for awhile, but not out of the game. Not everybody understands or sees the same game when they are watching the same game.

There will always be a human element to the game and none of us are perfect, spectators or refs.


Is this what it feels like when someone takes what you say out of context? :lol:

I was responding directly to PrideOnIce's post and the run around he seemed to be getting from different points of authority and some of the inconsistencies in answers he was receiving from refs. That's all.


I understand that, but that's the human element. It is going to be inconsistent. You can blame officials, but which ones? The ones who call it closer to how you see it, or the ones that call it any other way...who is right? That is where my beef is with this change...there is going to a whole lot of gray area with this change. I do agree with the change (although not wholeheartedly, but I do understand the why of what they are doing it), I just have a problem with their course of action and how they jammed it down our throats, there was no real conversation.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by GopherFan85 » Sun Jul 03 11:23 pm

Larch wrote:
team22tank wrote:Based on that it sounds like the problem lies with the officials...


This is where I take offense. Yes, I try to call every head contact that I see, however, have you ever officiated a game? It's not as cut and dried as you think. I had coach yell at me because I didn't call head contact when his player tried to avoid getting checked and ducked right into the body of the other player which stunned his player and put him on the ice for awhile, but not out of the game. Not everybody understands or sees the same game when they are watching the same game.

There will always be a human element to the game and none of us are perfect, spectators or refs.


As an official also I agree that it is tough to call things sometimes because you don't have the angle or best sight of the action. However sometimes it falls on the official. We say were are going to call the hits to the head or cfb but then we don't do so at all or inconsistenly. Yes, coaches are also to blame. I've done games where the coach is encouraging players to go for the big hits. That to me is a bigger issue than officials not making the calls. Officials need to be consistent and coaches need to promote skill development at the PeeWee level rather than just hitting.

All-in-all, I am glad that USA Hockey stepped up and removed checking from PeeWee hockey. I know the link to the youtube video put out by USA Hockey is posted in this thread. If you haven't I encourage you to look at it.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by sagard » Thu Jul 07 3:20 pm

My son will be a first year pee wee next year and I'm fine with the rule. I would have been fine with a rule allowing checking at the "A" level, but I think this will be fine for kids development. There are typically three times as many B and C players and to be truthful they just don't have enough consistent coaching at reffing at these levels to continue with with full hitting checking when presented the evidence from Quebec and the Mayo clinic. These arguments against full hitting checking have been posted for at least 10 months. The only arguments against the rule change have been emotional tirades that Johnny Superstar who will be playing varsity in the 8th grade will never have played a game of checking hockey. That player truly may not benefit from the new rule, but given the nature of elite hockey players today I'm sure they will have received great coaching and found a scrimmage or two with checking to play in.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by PrideOnIce » Fri Jul 22 3:32 pm

I heard from a lead official, who had a discussion with a district director of officiating, that it was the district director's opinion that the officiating would mimic a U12 game. Another coach and I were of the opinion that the peewee game would mimic more of a high school girls game, as far as contact. I then spoke to "someone in the know" and he is of the opinion that it will be even more checking/contact than a girls high school game. FWIW
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Mon Aug 01 9:36 am

Dropped my kid off yesterday at Breezy Point for the Doug Woog camp. Bunch of current and former Gopher players are counselors. Bunch of other Edina kids there - high end Edina kids. This should push my kid pretty hard, much more so than the Top Dog camp he did there a couple years ago where he was at the higher end of his age group.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by streakygopher » Mon Aug 01 1:25 pm

george wrote:Heard Louie talking with Barrero about this ruling last night. I continue to be amazed by the number of old-school players and hockey guys who support this change, including Lou and Brian Burke.

I started out opposed to it, but as I read more and more, I've come to support it. It won't impact my kid 'cause he moves to Bantams next season, but I'd support it either way.

The evidence that Dr. Stuart from Mayo has presented makes a convincing case that there are physiological reasons why 12 year olds should not be checking yet. Also, the evidecne from the Quebec youth league experiments are pretty convincing too.

Pretty much sums up the way I feel about it, now having had a kid and nephew go through hockey. I don't think these changes will hurt development of players one iota. USA hockey should be focusing on skills anyway and increasing the practice to game ratio. The best possible outcome for players is a high practice to game ratio....many programs are barely 2:1...coaches take every opportunity for a "scrimmage," and of course this is often fully supported by parents who would rather watch a game than drills.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Riff Raff » Fri Sep 23 2:03 pm

Not sure where to put this - mods feel free to relocate if necessary.

Cunninghams in South Saint Paul is closing and relocating to somewhere in Inver Grove Heights. It's been a SSP institution for years, as well and the the best hockey equiptment source for kids in the SE Metro.

It was great to have both Kokesh on Robert St. in WSP and Cunninghams in SSP so close to home....now both are gone :(

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by skiier32 » Fri Sep 23 2:49 pm

Riff Raff wrote:Not sure where to put this - mods feel free to relocate if necessary.

Cunninghams in South Saint Paul is closing and relocating to somewhere in Inver Grove Heights. It's been a SSP institution for years, as well and the the best hockey equiptment source for kids in the SE Metro.

It was great to have both Kokesh on Robert St. in WSP and Cunninghams in SSP so close to home....now both are gone :(


Riff Raff do you know where in IGH? Growing up there this feels like a major coup not to be confused with the Coop on 3rd!!

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by freighttrain » Fri Sep 23 4:14 pm

Went in there a few years ago and it was just dead in there. With the location of the it and the declining numbers of kids in SSP association I am not surprised at all about this news with Cunninghams. I think the Play It Again Sports in WSP took over alot of its business. There is always alot of parents with younger kids in there when I go and I have even had to wait over 20 minutes to get skates sharpened because how busy they were.

Just to mention I never got my skates sharpened at Cunninghams and never will even with them moving to IGH now. I was an Emery loyalist. Emery was the only one to sharpen my dad and I's skates until his passing away a few years ago. Now we go to the Play It Again Sports in WSP.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Greyeagle » Fri Sep 23 5:17 pm

freighttrain wrote:Just to mention I never got my skates sharpened at Cunninghams and never will even with them moving to IGH now. I was an Emery loyalist. Emery was the only one to sharpen my dad and I's skates until his passing away a few years ago. Now we go to the Play It Again Sports in WSP.


Wow, blast from the past.
He did a pretty good job sharpening.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by skiier32 » Mon Sep 26 11:33 am

Greyeagle wrote:
freighttrain wrote:Just to mention I never got my skates sharpened at Cunninghams and never will even with them moving to IGH now. I was an Emery loyalist. Emery was the only one to sharpen my dad and I's skates until his passing away a few years ago. Now we go to the Play It Again Sports in WSP.


Wow, blast from the past.
He did a pretty good job sharpening.


Wasn't Emmry located in Village Square? I know he sharpened my skates as well.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Tue Sep 27 10:56 am

Grading started last night for Edina bantams. There are 129 skaters signed up for tryouts. Two years ago when this same group were peewees we had 175 skaters at tryouts. I hear there are another 6 signed up to play but will skip right to C teams and miss the tryout skates.

Not sure how much of the loss is normal attrition as kids decide on different sports, or don't want to get hit by the big bad bantams, and how much is driven by the increasing costs in a down economy.

That two year slug of boys has been a big chunk moving up through the system since they were mites. Have the potential to be very strong too if they don't lose too many high end kids to varsity teams and other programs. As peewees they won state A two years running.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by freighttrain » Tue Sep 27 3:23 pm

skiier32 wrote:
Greyeagle wrote:
freighttrain wrote:Just to mention I never got my skates sharpened at Cunninghams and never will even with them moving to IGH now. I was an Emery loyalist. Emery was the only one to sharpen my dad and I's skates until his passing away a few years ago. Now we go to the Play It Again Sports in WSP.


Wow, blast from the past.
He did a pretty good job sharpening.


Wasn't Emmry located in Village Square? I know he sharpened my skates as well.


Yes he was in Village Square until he was pretty much forced (raise in rent) out by the owners so they could reconfigure it to what it is now. After that he did it out of his house.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Thu Dec 22 9:17 am

Saw a prominent ex-Gopher and ex-NHLer in a local sports shop with his son getting the kid's skates sharpened last night. Kid had an Edina squirt A jacket on. I didn't even know this family had moved into Edina. More talent coming up through the program....

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by LeoPohl » Fri Dec 23 10:53 am

george wrote:Saw a prominent ex-Gopher and ex-NHLer in a local sports shop with his son getting the kid's skates sharpened last night. Kid had an Edina squirt A jacket on. I didn't even know this family had moved into Edina. More talent coming up through the program....

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Sat Dec 24 5:13 pm

LeoPohl wrote:
george wrote:Saw a prominent ex-Gopher and ex-NHLer in a local sports shop with his son getting the kid's skates sharpened last night. Kid had an Edina squirt A jacket on. I didn't even know this family had moved into Edina. More talent coming up through the program....

How prominent?


You have seen him (and likely complained about him) on FSN broadcasts this season. :wink:

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Tue Jan 10 8:05 am

Holy Crap! I happened to catch the Edina Squirt A team last night for a while and it was amazing to watch. :shock: These kids are so fast and polished it is incredible. Some names out there we would recognize (Nevers, and Chorske for two). One of my kid's buddies was on the SQA team 3 years ago and I watched them play a lot, they were never this fast or this good. I see why they are ranked #1 in the state.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by gondo » Tue Jan 10 9:37 am

I saw it too. The other team had 2 5x3s and still struggled to get it into the offensive zone. A matchup against the squirt A team from 4 years ago would be very fun to watch.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Tue Jan 10 12:36 pm

gondo wrote:I saw it too. The other team had 2 5x3s and still struggled to get it into the offensive zone. A matchup against the squirt A team from 4 years ago would be very fun to watch.


I was there for one of the 5x3s. Pretty bad decision by the Edina Coaches to keep barking at the refs until they got the bench minor for it. :roll: I agree that the 4 minute high stick call was bad as the infraction seemed unintentional and minor (though the Shakopee kid tried to sell it hard), but you gotta let up on it after making your case.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by grabij » Wed Jan 11 11:23 am

george wrote:Holy Crap! I happened to catch the Edina Squirt A team last night for a while and it was amazing to watch. :shock: These kids are so fast and polished it is incredible. Some names out there we would recognize (Nevers, and Chorske for two). One of my kid's buddies was on the SQA team 3 years ago and I watched them play a lot, they were never this fast or this good. I see why they are ranked #1 in the state.

The two Edina Squirt B teams we have played so far this season are very good as well. Silver is ridiculously good.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Golden FE Ranger » Wed Jan 11 12:22 pm

george wrote:
gondo wrote:I saw it too. The other team had 2 5x3s and still struggled to get it into the offensive zone. A matchup against the squirt A team from 4 years ago would be very fun to watch.


I was there for one of the 5x3s. Pretty bad decision by the Edina Coaches to keep barking at the refs until they got the bench minor for it. :roll: I agree that the 4 minute high stick call was bad as the infraction seemed unintentional and minor (though the Shakopee kid tried to sell it hard), but you gotta let up on it after making your case.


There are so many reasons in this post to steer your kid away from hockey. Pretty sad. This is not directed at George, either.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by bigpoppa » Wed Jan 11 1:45 pm

Golden FE Ranger wrote:
george wrote:
gondo wrote:I saw it too. The other team had 2 5x3s and still struggled to get it into the offensive zone. A matchup against the squirt A team from 4 years ago would be very fun to watch.


I was there for one of the 5x3s. Pretty bad decision by the Edina Coaches to keep barking at the refs until they got the bench minor for it. :roll: I agree that the 4 minute high stick call was bad as the infraction seemed unintentional and minor (though the Shakopee kid tried to sell it hard), but you gotta let up on it after making your case.


There are so many reasons in this post to steer your kid away from hockey. Pretty sad. This is not directed at George, either.


THIS. :goodpost:

And we wonder why we have a shortage of quality officials. Who'd want to get yelled constantly over a game between 9 & 10 year olds. I wouldn't want my kid playing for that team. Ever.

Sorry - that's beyond ridiculous. Probably the same type of coach that's screaming at the refs at the upper levels "but he didn't mean to hit him from behind!" and then telling the player on the bench it was a "good hit & the ref doesn't know what he's talking about".

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Wed Jan 11 1:49 pm

grabij wrote:
george wrote:Holy Crap! I happened to catch the Edina Squirt A team last night for a while and it was amazing to watch. :shock: These kids are so fast and polished it is incredible. Some names out there we would recognize (Nevers, and Chorske for two). One of my kid's buddies was on the SQA team 3 years ago and I watched them play a lot, they were never this fast or this good. I see why they are ranked #1 in the state.

The two Edina Squirt B teams we have played so far this season are very good as well. Silver is ridiculously good.


BTW, the game I watched part of was against the Sabres. Finished 8-2.

Silver has Scott Bell as one of the coaches, right?

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by puckluck » Wed Jan 11 4:16 pm

Our Squirt A team played that Edina team back in the EP tournament and they were extremely disciplined. At the time, we were just before or at the half way point in the season and they had yet to allow a goal on them and obviously hadn't lost. To me, the most impressive part was the fact that they all move to open ice after passing rather than do the typical bunch up. The would really use the ice well and make plays. It was no "hot dog" session with them. Their coaches don't allow it. They eventually allowed one goal by the tournament's end, but that was pretty solid since 7 of the top 10 teams in the state were in the tournament.

Folks have told me though that their last year's SQA team was even better than this year's.... :shock:

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Thu Jan 12 7:52 am

Yeah, last year the squirt A team did not lose or tie and outscored on an average of like 9-0.15 or something ridiculous. :shock:

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by grabij » Thu Jan 12 8:42 am

george wrote:
grabij wrote:
george wrote:Holy Crap! I happened to catch the Edina Squirt A team last night for a while and it was amazing to watch. :shock: These kids are so fast and polished it is incredible. Some names out there we would recognize (Nevers, and Chorske for two). One of my kid's buddies was on the SQA team 3 years ago and I watched them play a lot, they were never this fast or this good. I see why they are ranked #1 in the state.

The two Edina Squirt B teams we have played so far this season are very good as well. Silver is ridiculously good.


BTW, the game I watched part of was against the Sabres. Finished 8-2.

Silver has Scott Bell as one of the coaches, right?

Yep, Scott Bell is one of the coaches for Silver.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Mon Jan 23 12:55 pm

New change to the checking rules on a trial basis, starting this week:

(ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA – January 23, 2012) -- The Minnesota Hockey Board of Directors voted unanimously at its winter board meeting to strengthen the severity of the penalty issued to players who are cited for boarding and checking-from-behind infractions. These rule changes are being adopted on a pilot basis and will be reevaluated at the conclusion of the 2012 Minnesota Hockey season. Minnesota Hockey will continue to work with the hockey community to evaluate the effectiveness of these changes.
“Player safety is and always will be the highest priority of Minnesota Hockey,” said Dave Margenau, President of Minnesota Hockey. “However, as important as the rule change is, it is equally vital that the culture of hockey change to eliminate the intimidation and illegal hits. Officials must call all illegal play and their calls must be supported by coaches, parents and players.”
Effective Wednesday, January 25, 2012, the penalty for boarding and checking-from-behind will be a five (5) minute major penalty. This will cover all Minnesota Hockey sanctioned games played until July 31, 2012; after this time, the changes will be reviewed by the Minnesota Hockey Board of Directors.
Minnesota Hockey will work with its local community associations, coaches, and referees to ensure other existing rules continue to be enforced and that the rule changes will be enforced with zero tolerance. Additionally, Minnesota Hockey will continue to provide ongoing education regarding proper hockey techniques, rules and regulations.
“Referees for the youth games take their role of ensuring safe and fair play seriously,” said Eric Olson, Minnesota Hockey Referee in Chief. “These rule changes will be called with zero tolerance.”
As the governing body of youth and amateur hockey in the state, Minnesota Hockey has been a national leader in creating safety initiatives for youth hockey. In 2004 Minnesota Hockey, in collaboration with the Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine Center, introduced the Hockey Education Program (HEP). The objective of HEP is to provide a safe and positive hockey experience by teaching hockey skills, educating parents and coaches and creating accountability through Fair Play. Fair Play is a program that awards teams who play within the rules and respect their opponents with a league standings Fair Play point for each game, win or lose.
Minnesota Hockey coaches have and will continue to teach skills and techniques to ensure as safe of a playing environment as possible. Through the mandatory USA Hockey Coaching Education Program, clinics and materials provided by Minnesota Hockey, coaches are provided the training to accomplish the goal of player development. Included in the training is a progressive approach to teaching body contact and checking. More information about these programs is available at www.usahockey.com. and www.minnesotahockey.org


We have a game Tuesday and one Thursday, it'll be interesting to see the change, if any between these games.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Hammy » Mon Jan 23 7:33 pm

Any people here with Pee Wee A players in the family?
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Fri Jan 27 7:52 am

Son's bantam team had their first game under the new rules last night. Other team took an early check from behind penalty and got the 5 min major and 10 minute misconduct for it. Our guys scored 2 goals during the major PP (of course they scored 11 on the game, so....). Hard to say if there was any real effect given the disparity of these two teams. Face a tougher foe in Eden Prairie (tied with us for 1st in Dist.) next Tuesday and we'll seeif that is impacted by the changes.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by stan_5150 » Fri Jan 27 7:57 am

Hammy wrote:Any people here with Pee Wee A players in the family?


Only a B1 here
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Wed Mar 21 2:34 pm

I have a question for anyone who has a kid playing youth hockey or anyone who played recently themselves.

Did you make scrapbooks for the kid's teams? I've only been in the Edina association and every team here does them. It's a big deal and I assumed everyone did them, but I heard the other night that it's an Edina phenomenon.

Each team has someone, usually a mom, volunteer to coordinate it. Every family does a page for their kid and at least one other page, like defense men, fans in the stands, the away tournament, etc. with photos and comments, funny stuff, etc. Then enough copies are made for each kid and books get assembled (in binders). It is a really cool way of memorializing each season.

Never heard of other sports doing it, but it is just assumed in Edina hockey that it'll be done.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by gopherhockeyfan7 » Wed Mar 21 2:42 pm

I played for Wayzata growing up and we always had scrapbooks from each season too.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by 5 O.T. » Wed Mar 21 4:07 pm

george wrote:I have a question for anyone who has a kid playing youth hockey or anyone who played recently themselves.

Did you make scrapbooks for the kid's teams? I've only been in the Edina association and every team here does them. It's a big deal and I assumed everyone did them, but I heard the other night that it's an Edina phenomenon.

Each team has someone, usually a mom, volunteer to coordinate it. Every family does a page for their kid and at least one other page, like defense men, fans in the stands, the away tournament, etc. with photos and comments, funny stuff, etc. Then enough copies are made for each kid and books get assembled (in binders). It is a really cool way of memorializing each season.

Never heard of other sports doing it, but it is just assumed in Edina hockey that it'll be done.


Had nephews and a niece in Armstrong and Eden Prairie programs within the past few years. They did/do it in both programs.
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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by Orion » Wed Mar 21 5:10 pm

5 O.T. wrote:
george wrote:I have a question for anyone who has a kid playing youth hockey or anyone who played recently themselves.

Did you make scrapbooks for the kid's teams? I've only been in the Edina association and every team here does them. It's a big deal and I assumed everyone did them, but I heard the other night that it's an Edina phenomenon.

Each team has someone, usually a mom, volunteer to coordinate it. Every family does a page for their kid and at least one other page, like defense men, fans in the stands, the away tournament, etc. with photos and comments, funny stuff, etc. Then enough copies are made for each kid and books get assembled (in binders). It is a really cool way of memorializing each season.

Never heard of other sports doing it, but it is just assumed in Edina hockey that it'll be done.


Had nephews and a niece in Armstrong and Eden Prairie programs within the past few years. They did/do it in both programs.


Must be after the mite levels. The didn't do that the last two years in mites.

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by george » Wed Mar 21 9:11 pm

Orion wrote:
5 O.T. wrote:
george wrote:I have a question for anyone who has a kid playing youth hockey or anyone who played recently themselves.

Did you make scrapbooks for the kid's teams? I've only been in the Edina association and every team here does them. It's a big deal and I assumed everyone did them, but I heard the other night that it's an Edina phenomenon.

Each team has someone, usually a mom, volunteer to coordinate it. Every family does a page for their kid and at least one other page, like defense men, fans in the stands, the away tournament, etc. with photos and comments, funny stuff, etc. Then enough copies are made for each kid and books get assembled (in binders). It is a really cool way of memorializing each season.

Never heard of other sports doing it, but it is just assumed in Edina hockey that it'll be done.


Had nephews and a niece in Armstrong and Eden Prairie programs within the past few years. They did/do it in both programs.


Must be after the mite levels. The didn't do that the last two years in mites.


Yeah, I never heard of it till squirts.

So, for sure it is common in the western suburbs at least. Obviously the person who told me it was only Edina was full of, er something. :wink:

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Re: Youth Hockey

Post by stan_5150 » Thu Mar 29 4:13 pm

I do memory DVD's on the side and up until this past year I did one for my oldest's teams all the way through to this year...I ran out of time :(

Parents give me some pictures, I'll put some music to them and away we go! If you're interested let me know. :wink:
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