Who succeeds ... the kid who plays every tourney and dad pays anything he needs/wants or the kid who just plays what dad can afford. Both have good skill set and elite level players
Give it up people in the know
Rich kids top6 and top4, middle class round out the roster.
I'm sure this will quickly break down into class warfare, but to have an informed discussion I'd want to know what age you're thinking. I'm going to pick one.
If equal skillset as 11 year olds, the kid whose family can afford more will get better coaching by guys that can bring more of his game out and work on his weaknesses. From PeeWees on, it becomes more about ice, ice, ice. And that costs.
The wealthier kid will also get more exposure, which leads to greater opportunities for advancement in the sport.
Plus more people with influence in the sport will be talking about him. The networking aspect becomes a HUGE part of it starting at 13+.
All roads lead to beer league unless you are one of the 08s. All their roads lead to nhl baby!!!
If the dad can afford to put the kid in a decent club program, the kid will be just fine. Not missing anything by not playing in spring/summer tourneys. And I see plenty of kids who parents dole out big bucks for them to do, for example, PV hockey camp all summer - and the results are minimal for many kids. (Not that PV doesn't have a good program, but it is what it is, a lot kids going through the motions and/or not really wanting to be there two summer days per week.) A kid could develop good stick handle and shooting skills without ever leaving the house.
It's a money sport. Has been for years and only becoming more so. Thing is all the other sports save football have caught up. If your parents can afford the best training, club teams, travel, equipment, etc. you're going to have an advantage.
Doesn't mean a kid from the lower/middle can never make it but it is one more obstacle to be overcome.
Someone told me AAU baseball is like $3K for a season. If that's the case then yes other sports are catching on. Its a no brainer - You will get better playing against better kids. Parents that pay more are more invested. I coached town a few years ago and there were a good amount of kids that would miss practice and games for things like ski trips, boy scouts, etc. I think if those parents were more invested financially there kids would not be missing practices and games.
? Prep? Junior hockey is the path to college hockey. Love the commentators during the NHL draft when the local kid was picked from Thayer. They spent about two minutes talking about how the kid was 'playing against weak high school competition' and it's hard to know much about a kid who plays 'just high school hockey in the states.'
True, but the prep hockey parents will always defend it. I think when you go into the Headmasters office and right after he tells you the kid need$ to 'repeat a year' and as you are pulling out your check book the Headmaster tells you to recite the pledge - "You will honor and obey this important covenant, thou shall always defend prep school hockey and education. You will always insist that both are a superior products and the only true pathway to eternal professional success, a full scholarship to the school of your choice, marital bliss and total enlightenment....you missed a couple zeros there."
It's not a matter of rich or poor. It all depends on which kid has the hottest mommy. :smirk:
I love class warfare talk on a hockey discussion board.
Define rich (I say top 5% of earners or a little over 400K per year in income for MA)
Define middle income (PEW defines it as falling between 67% to 200% of median income in any given state for a family of 3, in MA that equals approx $52K - $154K)
Nope, hockey is not just a rich family sport. I know plenty of players that have come from middle income families that have done quite well in the sport.
You're welcome and I did give a binary answer to devolving question. It is not a rich kids sport, it's a middle class sport with families willing to commit available resources but some people see a family making 200K a year & assume they are "rich" so I thought it important to add some context.
Please return to reading your "graphic novel" as I realize all these words are giving you a headache.
If a kid is truly poor, or what most of us would agree is poor he isn't playing hockey anyway. Same with baseball now that it's pretty much mandatory to go the AAU route if you want to get anywhere. The kids from limited means are still gravitating towards football and basketball.
Seriously. How many stories do you see about hockey players that came from tough backgrounds in today's world? Those stories are a dime a dozen with football and basketball. Hockey? Can't remember the last time I heard one.
Money sport. More now than ever before.
we agree that hockey is expensive, so we assume those with more of it will have a better opportunity to succeed. and in a vacuum that should hold but... those with more money have OTHER opportunities: 'sorry can't play this weekend, heading to the family condo for a ski vacation in Vail' ok fine Loon. middle and upper middle tend to have enough for 1 thing, so they pour it on - hockey. rich - have hockey, skiing, vacation condos, music lessons... more importantly rich tend to see sports as exercise, for socializing and college application building. they chose colleges based on the major, campus or 'my dad went there and his dad and his dad and...'.
HBO real sports did a story on the explosion of youth baseball tournaments. they met a family that went every weekend to another state for another round of games in hopes of getting that coveted college scholarship. the reporter ask how much they spent - estimated about $100k over the past 10 years. when the reporter said 'that would cover two years at a very good state school' they were unable to even comprehend it. the rich? would use some of that $100k on a sport, but use most of it to buy a duplex and generate cash flow to offset the expenses and later use the equity to buy another (and another).
The gifted and intelligent athlete who bucks the boilerplate trend yet stays in the loop... Player navigating NE youth hockey on the cheap...will always be sought after. Managers and coaches are not wealthy people and very few Arron Ekblad's out there.
My wife and I are 43, 2 kids, 1 boy plays hockey and lax, 1 girl gymnastics and lax, we make $150K a year total and feel like the lower middle class when it comes to sports. Hockey tuition is about $6,500.00, travel, etc..another 4-5K per year, same with gymnastics. 23K for 2 sports, then lax. Son makes every team he's ever tried out for since mites, Top 40 selection in MA and was in the mix for USA Camp selection. Why do we do it you ask, I have no idea is the answer! I guess it makes the kids happy so we are happy and willing to give up vacations, house updates, new cars, etc..
I see many people confuse networking with financial status. What you don't have in cash, you have to make up with networking by doing the small things, be nice to people, ask for advice and listen, don't criticize and complain. Our financial status isn't that of most but my son has still had every opportunity to play and get recognized. To each their own I guess, but this has worked with us. Gotta run, working the skate shop today in exchange for some ice time.