What route should they take? NCAA or QMJHL?
What’s the best route for them? NCAA or QMJHL?
Over the years we have all heard and witnessed some amazing stories coming out of both brands of hockey.
Those in the hockey world have also heard some not so good stories. Each brand is susceptible to their own fair share of issues. Usually the common thread for each brand revolves around broken promises.
Obviously the other controversial topic when it comes to the game of hockey and player development is choice.
Just let that sink in for a minute. Choice is controversial? How can that be?
It’s clear in the game of hockey when families make choices about the direction or path they decide to take that others will ultimately ridicule them.
In the hockey world people tend to hold grudges, gossip and criticize other people’s decisions.
In the hockey world when people make decisions about what they think is best for their son or daughter some people get really upset and resentful.
Whether it be the NCAA or QMJHL, there is a choice to make and that choice is extremely difficult.
Again it all comes back to the family’s choice. Not what I think or what others think, it’s up to the family, it’s their decision, it’s their choice.
It’s clear why some people get extremely upset with other people’s decisions, but let’s be brutally honest it’s not yours to make.
Is the NCAA the best option for player development?
Why do some families spend significant capital to send their child away to attend school and play hockey or go searching for lucrative scholarships?
The great debate between the NCAA and QMJHL rages on and it always intensifies around this time of year.
Why is choice so controversial in the game of hockey?
You see the NCAA make promises about the future. The QMJHL make promises about the present and future.
In the game of hockey promises are extremely difficult to make and keep.
All the parents and agents want is what’s best for the kid. You could say the same about any hockey organization.
Some people will look at the stats, the hard facts to base their decisions or make their choices while others will try to talk to as many people as they can that have experienced both sides of the fence so to speak.
Advisors and agents are always heavily involved in the decisions being made and in many cases they could become the tipping point. At the end of the day it’s always a family decision or it should be.
Everyone has the right to make their decision or choice when it comes to the game of hockey, whether everyone likes it or not.
There’s a massive plan of action that occurs when the family and player decides to go south and play NCAA.
There’s a massive commitment if they chose to go the Q route as well.
Every hockey family have their reasons for the decision they make. Just like every player has their own unique path in the game.
Why do some people in the hockey world have to be so critical and vocal when it comes to other hockey families decisions?
There’s tons of misconceptions about both routes that many people are unaware of.
Those people dealing with the situation or that are making the decisions on what route to take feel a pressure like no other.
“The QMJHL route is instant, while the NCAA is a drawn-out process which is difficult to navigate.”
That’s some of the BS you would hear around the rinks.
It’s not uncommon to hear all the slander and misinformation when it comes to both routes.
That’s why the decision making process is so pressure packed and unbelievably stressful for so many people.
At 16 years old, players are forced to decide about their future, forced to decide what avenue to take in a game they love and would do just about anything to accomplish their dreams in it. Is that fair? The NCAA route allows players to grow, while the QMJHL route might close doors earlier. Again if you have been around the game you have probably heard them all.
Multiple sources are reporting a number of highly touted 2022 QMJHL Draft prospects are electing to take the NCAA rather than the Q.
Arguably one of the most controversial aspects of all of this is the back channel overtures that take place. That’s why there is an undercurrent of resentment and mistrust from both sides.
In the past players and their families have been coached up or informed to tell some QMJHL franchises that they are “considering their options.”
In some instances “considering their options” essentially means I want to pick and choose where I want to go and play in the QMJHL.
Countless QMJHL teams have been burned by that which has led to a lot of teams coming right out with,
“Will you play exhibition games”
Not “will you report” anymore, “will you play exhibition games is no doubt the most commonly asked questions during the predraft interview process.
The decision making aspect of things doesn’t have to be controversial, it’s the historical aspect or horror stories of the past that make some in the hockey world very leery of the entire process.
Both those in favour of the NCAA or QMJHL will always have their differing points of view or perspectives and let’s face it both sides have their benefits and draw backs.
Could you imagine being in that situation with your family or son or daughter?
That’s what all these critics and naysayers have to do when they ruthlessly criticize and rip kids and their families on social media when they try to make the best decision for their future.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion.
Everyone is entitled to their decision.
Everyone is entitled to change their mind. Nevertheless, it’s when those lines are blurred and or manipulated by others for personal gain, that’s when people get burned.
The NCAA route is always the topic of conversation around QMJHL draft time.
As we all know the game of hockey is big business and when it comes to the CHL or the NCAA jobs are on the line. Business is business. I’m sure both sides have hid behind the business side of the game when they make decisions. As we all know the business side of the game is off side quite a bit.
Wouldn’t it be great if everyone within the game used an element of transparency and honesty when discussing their intentions.
I guess some things never change, just like the debate between the NCAA and QMJHL and what route is the best to take. The debate rages on, let’s just hope people understand and learn how to respect others decisions before outwardly ripping them.