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How to Prepare for the USHL Combine Junior Hockey News

Published: Tuesday, 23 Feb 2016  
By: Grace Breseman

The USHL combine is quickly approaching and there’s a few things to know before players get in over their heads. 

The combine is the only pre-draft event sponsored by the USHL that all teams will have scouts and coaches attending. Some private companies like to host “pre-draft camps” however these camps are in no way affiliated with the USHL unless the USHL logo is a part of their event. This is something that’s important to know for any players who have considered attending something like this. 

Probably the best part about the draft is that the combine occurs right before it giving players one last chance to show a coach what skills they have. And there are plenty of ways that skills can be shown at the combine. Players will all get to play in a minimum of four games. All of course within their own birth year in order to keep the playing field level. Coaches don’t want players to be at an unfair advantage if they are a few years younger than their opponents.

If coaches had an eye on a player at the early end of the season the combine provides an opportunity to see how that player has developed within the season. 

Different aspects of the combine include physical as well as their hockey IQ, which can be shown off during the games. Another part of what makes a player USHL worthy is their character. The USHL is a league that doesn’t just want good hockey players but good people as well. Character is an important part of any athlete and the USHL is no different. Off the ice the players will also undergo physical and cognitive testing that will provide further background on each of the USHL hopefuls. Classroom presentations will be offered for the players to show them what it really takes to be in the USHL. 

All players invited will have already passed a pre-screening from the USHL player development staff. This year’s combine will be held in Orland Park, Ill. at the Arctic Ice Arena. The breakdown this year is 2000-2001 birth years are April 21-24, 1998-1999 are April 28- May 1, and 2002 are July 26-29.

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