Sunday, July 5, 2009

OJHL Showcase Idea Worth Stealing

I used to work for Bayshore Broadcasting in Ontario so the other day when looking through their website I noticed an article on Collingwood hosting the OJHL NCAA Showcase Weekend. 15 OJHL teams will be coming to Collingwood in January to play 2 games each in front of a ton of college and pro scouts. That way the players will be in mid-season form and playing in their usual environment.

I think it's a fantastic idea.

I know the BCHL and AJHL are putting together a prospects game that will be a terrific way to showcase the top unsigned talent in the league. That being said, shouldn't the league be doing everything it can to showcase every available player? Post-BCHL opportunities don't exist for just the top talent on each team. However, sometimes it's harder for certain players to get seen or get noticed unless a scout is specifically coming out to look at them.

Why can't the BCHL put on say two showcase events like this every year? One for the coast and one for the interior. I'm not sure about putting them on the weekend though. I don't think any team wants to give up potential home games in one weekend so perhaps instead it's something that runs for three days in the middle of the week.

The other key for me would be that the league should extend their regular season schedule by two games and count these games as a part of that schedule. That way the showcase isn't' just an exhibition. They're games that count and teams will be giving everything they have to win.

Sometimes prospects games or all star type games can turn into too much of an individual showcase. It also doesn't put players in their familiar setting where they are playing with established teammates in an established system. That's the best way to showcase a player. This way every single player in the BCHL could get exposure to what I would think would be a good number of scouts. Especially if they knew they could see that many players in one spot.

You could try to put all 17 BCHL teams in one city over 4 days instead, but I think it's better to split things up and limit every one's travel. The two events would also give everyone an opportunity to get together in the same place and build on that BCHL family. I think it would be a blast. I'm already thinking about how difficult it would be to get a word in if all of our broadcasters got together for a drink in the same place.

What do you think? To me it's a no brainer and an opportunity the league should consider as soon as possible.

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