Re: Team USA Needs New GM
posted at 2/28/2014 11:30 AM EST
In response to marco0863's comment:
US IS becoming a stronger hockey nation but still not at canada level. If quebec could ger act straight and produce more quebec born players then Canada would be much greater force .
I'm actually not sure that the US is becoming stronger in terms of producing hockey talent at the NHL level. I think they've stayed about the same. Not sure that the current period can match the American-born influx of the late-80's early 90's (Tkachuk, Modano, Leetch, Chelios, Amonte, Roenick, Housley, etc, etc).
As youth/high school sports have become more and more about chossing one sport instead of playing three or four, America's best athletes still rarely choose hockey. As anyone knows, it is less about how many kids get in youth hockey programs, and more about getting the best athletes there and then having them choose hockey as their passion. Every American kid plays soocer when they're under 10. Then all the good athletes choose other sports.
Seems like in Canada all of the best athletes want to be hockey players. In the vast majority of the US, kids don't play hockey. Maybe in Massachusetts or Minnesota, some of the best athletes play hockey, but even at my high school (Mass.) it seemed like the best athletes largely chose other sports (football, basketball, baseball).
I think that will continue to be an advantage for Canada and cause a talent disparity. The US is big enough to produce some real good players and have a shot at the international level, but the American public is never going to care about things like the WJC, and I think the sport will continue to get a very small percentage of good athletes who decide to dedicate their lives to hockey.