Any advice from people with kids who have transitioned into the U14 level? Which leagues are regarded as having the best competition and player talent?
Don't worry about the league. 14U hockey is a downgrade from the year before. Half the kids going into the season are entering the 9th grade while the other half are 8th graders. The 9th graders are looking for a split season team. The other half a full season team. Look for a team that is going to be competitive and play in good tournaments. If your kid is in the 8th grade and can not get on a competitive full season team, then find a split season team. At Thanksgiving take a look around. After Thanksgiving, half the full season teams can't run a practice because they only have one goalie and a handful of skaters. The JV players show up at games on weekends. You can find a full season team that will take your kid once December starts. I wish I did that. I would have saved thousands.