Great moments are born from Great Opportunities – Herb Brooks. Whether this is your first high performance event or your third the High Performance Program is a great opportunity to showcase your skills. Don’t keep yourself from experiencing great moments. Many of the hockey players we have worked with over the years, with the benefit of hindsight, tell us that the best way to make the high performance program a great opportunity is to see just as that.
Your play this weekend is a snapshot in time. If you view at as more than that you may succumb to the pressure that creates for you. It is tempting to take a “sportscenter mindset” in these situations and try impress the evaluators, scouts and coaches with flashy plays. Make plays but don’t press.
Too often players make the mistake of believing that the impression they make here will a create a default future of glory and commitments to college or destiny of failure and a struggle on road to late night hockey with their friends.
Instead, take a mindset that views this weekend as a challenge to the skills you have prepared your entire career to showcase. Play within yourself, to your strengths, and don’t try to be someone you are not. Compete against your last performance each day and be willing to self forgive if you make mistakes. Stay hungry if you played “lights out” the day before. The key to being an elite performer is consistency. Whether you move on to the next phase of the process, find a way to learn about yourself as person and a player.
The evaluators, college coaches, and your team’s coaches are professionals who are trained to notice the little things that make you a great player. Be a team player. Don’t be a jerk. If you are on the bubble in any way being a team player may break the tie. Consistent play will show you and those watching that you are making the most of your opportunity.