5 Tips for Making the Team Next Season!
Hockey season is approaching quickly and that means tryouts are too! For most people, tryouts come with the anxiety of wondering if you'll make the best team, if your friends will be on the same team, or if you'll like your new coach. It's important to remember that teams are separated into different levels so there's even competition and players are able to grow at the right pace - so just because you don't make the top team now, doesn't mean you won't be able to next year. When it comes to tryouts, coaches keep a watchful eye out for more than just goals, assists, or saves. Just like Herb Brooks says in miracle "it's not about the best players, it's about the right players." So here are 5 tips to help you put your best foot forward when you step onto the ice for tryouts:
1. PUT IN THE WORK
It sounds simple, but it's noticeable. A lot of coaches have been watching players for multiple years and they can tell who is putting in the work when they see you each tryout session. They notice if your shot has gotten harder from shooting pucks at your Tarp in the garage or if your dekes have gotten better from working on your Sweethands. Fundamental skills are an essential part to any hockey player's game, so putting in the extra work will become obvious to coaches who know they can trust their players are prepared for the highest level by working hard away from the rink.
2. High Compete
You won't always score every shift. You won't always make the perfect pass or make the big save either. But what you can do is compete for every puck on the ice every time you're out there. Battling hard in the corners to win pucks back, hustling on the backcheck to break up a play, and just being hard to play against for other players is something that can make any player stand out to coaches. Every coach wants their players to give it their all for each shift out on the ice and it's the easiest thing to control when you're out there.
3. Do Something Every Shift - Big or Small
Compete level is where it starts, but executing a play every time you're out on the ice will get coaches circling your name each time you're out on the ice. They see smart plays to get the puck in deep, hard forechecks, or a quick dish to a teammate to get a good opportunity in the offensive zone. They also see a great backcheck through the neutral zone or blocked shot on defense. While scoring goals is an obvious way to get noticed, good coaches will also players that contribute to everything else that goes into making that goal happen.
4. Body Language
One of the most noticeable things coaches look for is body language on the ice, off the ice, and on the bench. While in the moment, slamming your stick after not scoring or making a bad play doesn't seem like a big deal, coaches can tell when players are losing focus or potentially doing things that could hurt their team. Making sure to continue to work hard and focus on the next play is incredibly important and if you decide to break your stick or pout on the bench, coaches will know that you're not a player that can keep that focus throughout the whole game.
5. Being a Good Teammate
Alongside having good body language, coaches also look for good team players. A coach will take a less skilled player over a selfish one 9 times out of 10. No coach wants to deal with players who think it's all about them or that constantly put down other teammates. So make sure you're cheering on your teammates from the bench and helping encourage them to do better next time if they don't make a good play.
Tryouts are just around the corner, but there's still time to get your game dialed in before you have to hit the ice and show your stuff and we've got the tools to help you bring your best. Whether it's more reps on your backyard net with the help of the Ultimate Goalie or a new Stickhandling Ball to warmup with on the big day, let us help you make the team!