Commitment. Some feel it is a dirty word. Others take the word to heart and make it one of the foundation principles of their lives. Most of us are somewhere in the middle.
For junior hockey, we hear the word often used in relation to an individual player committing to a certain team or even a university. We also hear about it in regards to the services of a coach. A commitment is just that, a promise to do what we say we are going to do.
We have talked about the continued abuse of players and coaches by certain junior hockey teams in the past, but what we have not addressed is the fact that the majority of teams have built a reputation of doing things the right way. It's funny how that works, do things right and stay in business, operate on the other side of the fence and a team finds themselves out of business or worse, playing in their fourth arena in four years.
The fact is that almost all North American teams do operate with a respectable level of decency, integrity, and commitment.
In order to expect a serious commitment from players, coaches, sponsors, and fans, a team owner needs to look in the mirror and decide to operate within the boundaries of decency. That commitment starts with the guy on top and should trickle down to the volunteer in the penalty box.
I'd like to see another commitment, one that every team in the system should embrace. We challenge all of you to give a little back to the game next season. Give an hour to a pre-schooler. Introduce them to our game. Commit to sharing your own passion by planting the seed of hockey into the consciousness of tomorrow's generation.
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