years ago..when my boy was just a whippa.. I used to skate men's league. I remember showing up one night and there was a young kid. Maybe 19 or 20. He was fast. Made everyone else look like a duster (which we all were/are). It wasn't just that he was 20 years junior, you could tell, this kid could skate. Smooth. Effortless.
Anyway, back in the locker room after the game and I said something about how good he was to the old man next to me. He told me he was his dad and said something I'll never ever forget... "this is what you get for your investment".
Problem is that you look at it as an investment. It is a youth sport and nothing more to 99% of these kids. A small percentage will play in college and a fraction of a percent of those kids will play beyond college. Let go of the dream and just enjoy the ride.
Will my hockey investment lead to Beer League for my kid?
I just dropped 100k over the past 12 months to get my little bendy to the Q.
Your investment will definitely result in a beer leaguer at some point. It will also result in higher grades, higher confidence, higher pay, larger network of people to leverage, etc... It could help to pay some of their education, and it could end up resulting in "the house/car of your dreams".
I think the material returns are less valuable than the life skills your child will learn.