To play or not to play, that is the question….
I have recently been asked this by some new skaters who are nervous about going to play in a tournament on teams with highly skilled players. My answer is definitely, come play if you enjoy playing hockey and hanging out with fun people.
Let me address some common concerns:
- I don’t know anybody going to the tournament. No problem, you will meet a lot of new friends at the draft party on Friday night. If you read my first post you will know my story. I went to the first tournament because I saw some friends were going. I didn’t end up on a team with any of them, but had a great time. I went to the next draft tournament by myself, at least that’s what I thought until the draft party. I was barely in the door on Friday night before people from the first draft were saying hello.
- I am a new to hockey or not very skilled. It doesn’t matter. Just look at the ratings and try to be honest about your skill level. You will be placed in a draft round with others of similar skill. It has been my experience that everyone is very encouraging to those of us with less skill. If the good players are willing to make a pass to me, they will pass to you.
- I am too old. Only if you want to be. There are a fair number of regulars (including myself) that are over 50 and I know for sure there have been players in their 60s.
- I don’t drink. You aren’t required to drink alcoholic beverages during the drafting process or at any other time. Lon “The Legend” doesn’t drink and has been to more tournaments than anyone except NCHL employees.
Go ahead and sign up for a Draft Tournament. Once you try one I think you will want to keep coming back.
Until next time, keep your head up and your stick on the ice.