- Highest level reached: AAA Midget in the late 80s
- Comparable: Andrew Brunette except much slower
- Favourite Team: Quebec Nordiques / Colorado Avalanche
- Favourite Player: Peter Stastny
At first, I started doing this just for fun to see what kind of results I would get 3-4 years down the line. I would watch as many draft eligible players as I could and then come up with my own Top-30 and send it to my brother by email. My results were a bit of a mixed bag early on because I really didn’t get to watch the players nearly as much as I should have but I was still able to determine with a pretty good ratio, the players who didn’t flag to me as players who would develop as many expected. Turns out, I was right more than I was wrong, so I kept going.
I kept putting in more and more time, as much time as I could, all the while working a full-time job and a part-time job. I found that when going beyond a Top-30 to a Top-50 the scope tends to widen and it becomes more challenging.
Expanding to a Top-100 was an even bigger challenge but it also turned out to be an even more enjoyable process than I anticipated. Having just a full-time job + a long commute has given me the chance to see more players and make better evaluations. I still don’t get to see all of the players and for me that still remains a major annoyance but I do tend to see a large majority of the top ranked players every year.
For 2019, I’m hoping to be able to take it a step further and hopefully time constraints are going to allow that.
VIDEO vs LIVE
There seems to be a stigma associated with making evaluations through video rather than attending games live. I don’t mind admitting that 99% of all of my scouting reports come from video. If my scouting reports end up being accurate, why would people care anyways? I’ve done both live and video and to be honest, I’m not sure if there is a difference in how I can evaluate a player’s skillset and if it’s going to translate over to the pros by either being there live or watching on TV. For me, there is no real difference between the two.
I mean, I get it…there are a lot of people who are putting in a lot of long hours travelling to get to see these kids live and I think that’s great. There’s a social-networking aspect there that I just don’t get from sitting behind a couple of computer screens. At the same time, I really enjoy the flexibility of being able to switch from one league to another without needing to physically move to a different location.
While there are too many variables for anyone to get everything right, I think I’ve got a pretty good track record over the years. I can only say that I have ZERO biases in terms of country of origin, junior team or ethnicity….I just don’t care about that. It’s about what these kids can do on the ice. I just call them as I see them.
The Hockey Prospector