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Afternoon Line- Brandon Dubinsky


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Devils advocate, maybe they are encouraging getting an education while playing hockey so you can be something outside of hockey after you retire.

Thats idealistic however and it really should be more in line with the mahor junior rules.

I also imagine major junior encouraged the current format as well though.  At least in regards to them.  Colleges wouldnt have the same motivation I imagine.

Posted by ThatGuy on 08/25/17 at 01:49 PM ET

Hank1974's avatar

I like the cut of your jib ThatGuy.

I’ll continue playing devils advocate.

Major Junior has had a number of unfair advantages over college for years/decades now.

For starters, junior clubs will pay players under the table. It’s never spoken about, but it happens more frequently than you think.
Some players have received 6-digits in a one-time payment to secure their services.

Secondly, while the CHL offers free education, they have many loopholes to get them out of that obligation.
Such as;
- they have to enroll after a year of no longer playing junior hockey.
- if they receive $.01 from a pro team, they are off the hook for paying for an education.*

If one of my kids were lucky enough to make it to that level, I’d tell them to get a scholarship from a U.S. college all day long.
The chances of making a handsome living by playing pro hockey are slim and none. Might as well have a 4-year degree from a reputable college.

The CHL has been boning the NCAA for a long time. It’s great that they finally have something over that money making endeavor called Major Junior hockey.

Saying that, it is an unfair advantage and they should close that loophole.
But I just laugh when people like Dubinsky cry foul when the NCAA finally gets one over on the CHL.

*I’ve mentioned this story on these boards before but I think it’s worth repeating.
The CHL is rife with stories like this one.
So, to get a club off the hook from paying 100K+ for a secondary education, what they’ll do is call a colleague from a lower league like the ECHL, or Pacific League - anything that’s considered pro hockey - to reach out to their former player and offer a 2-week stint.
The kids almost always say ‘yes’ as they still dream of making the NHL.
As soon as they cash their first check, the CHL team is off the hook, and then the ‘pro’ team cuts them as soon as their 2-week contract expires.
The kid becomes completely screwed over.

I believe the CHL was forced to change rules to prevent this sort of thing from happening, but they hosed a lot of kids for many years pulling shenanigans like this one.

Posted by Hank1974 on 08/25/17 at 02:08 PM ET


So,o you two think that Dubinsky’s complaint has anything to do with education?

That conclusion is, um…curious.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 08/27/17 at 05:34 PM ET

Nathan's avatar

I’ll play devil’s advocate in the other direction.

Even as expensive as higher education is these days, if you get to a point where you’re good enough for a full ride at a university, you should realistically be at a point where your pro prospects are fairly clear. Usually, if there’s uncertainty, it’s in the direction of being good enough to pull a scholarship, but not being good enough to be sure you’ll get drafted. If you’re honest with yourself in your assessment, that’s an easy call to make.

Nowadays, these kids are found and monitored so young. You can have a pretty good idea if you’re draft material before you even have to make a decision about if you want to go to college, and if so, where you want to go and what you want to pursue there.

If you’ve got good reason to believe you will nab an entry-level NHL deal, and the path to it is via major junior, you do it. But you have to be SMART with that entry-level money. Build yourself a $100k college fund. Then, if you end up a fringe guy and find yourself on the fence with pro hockey in your mid-20s, you just go to school. Or, if you have a great career, even as a fourth-line guy, you live the life and when you’re done, even if you’re 35, you’ve earmarked the chunk of change needed to pursue whatever interest you might want to get back to, or get into.

That said, I’m in favor of college athletes being either outright paid, or at least having irrevocable tuition coverage that is insured against injury. This is obviously more prominent in football and basketball, since hockey is rarely a revenue sport for colleges. But even for major college hockey, I would advocate that guys should get guaranteed coverage on a given number of credit hours for each season they start as a scholarship athlete. This would alleviate the joke of the “student athlete”—come on, the sport is a full-time job if you’re at that level. Let’s just level with each other, allow those guys to be part-time students while they play, and bank covered credit hours that they can essentially redeem at a later time, whether it is the offseason, or when they’re 38 years old and retired from their pro careers.

Posted by Nathan from the scoresheet! on 08/28/17 at 09:50 AM ET

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