feels like they are a contender at training camp. Sometimes optimism can get
the best of folks before the hard dose of reality can set in. Every league has
a set of favorites before the first puck is even dropped.
There is one common
denominator among just about all championship teams; confidence and
unconditional faith in the system. It takes more than talented players; and if that
were the case just about any rich guy can spend his money on hired guns to be a
competitor. In most cases, it is the team that did not take the shortcuts that
make it to the championship game.
HOW TO MAKE A CHAMPION
are good owners and there are great owners. The guys that provide a great
foundation for a coach to work with are the same guys that generally get to
raise the trophy.
Support- The team
needs an iron-clad staff and die-hard supporters that will go down with the
ship if needed.
Coaching- The right
guy can make all the difference. Championship caliber coaches are made at
championship winning programs. Talking about winning and having the experience
to actually do it are two entirely different animals. The coach needs to have
confidence in his own abilities, confidence in the players he brought to the
table, and be able to actually coach them through the developmental process.
Chemistry- It only
takes a single floater in the punch bowl to keep everyone from drinking the
Kool-Aid. Coaches need to select guys that are going to fit into the system and
get along with the rest of the group. The programs that are able to install a
close family atmosphere often experience a high degree of success.
the guy signing the checks, to the coach, to the team captain, the leaders of
the team are always the most important component of a champion.
cannot be taught or bought. It has to be installed at the first day of training
camp and reiterated all along the way with practice, patience, and execution. A
champion goes into the final expecting to win.
pretender? Once in a while a surprise comes along to upset the apple cart but
generally we are all able to identify the haves and have-nots every summer. At
this level of play, the coach is the most important component, but it's the intangibles
that often make the difference when going after top level talent. Teams with a
track record of winning, getting players moved on to school, and delivering a
great developmental experience are the same teams that find themselves
contending for a championship at the end of the season.
It's the other guys who are sucking the wind out of the leagues.
The Shreveport Mudbugs took the North American Hockey League's Robertson Cup because all the pieces were in place before they ever dropped the first puck back in 2016-2018. This year's championship was inevitable.
There will be many more to come.
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