By Michael Moore

As the winter season draws to a close, we would like to wish everyone still competing in youth hockey and prep school playoffs the best of luck in their pursuit of a championship. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to get to this point, and we are proud of all the players who have made it this far.

We would also like to take a moment to congratulate the Valor Christian Eagles on their recent Colorado state championship win. This is a tremendous accomplishment, and we wish them the best of luck as they head to nationals.

As always, we want to provide our readers with helpful resources to improve their game. This week, Coach Littler is recommending a great article by Jon Gordon titled “Positive Tip: Play to Win.” Gordon provides some valuable insights on how to maintain a positive mindset and perform at your best during game time.

Lastly, we want to direct your attention to a fantastic article by Greg Revak titled “The Rim is the Lazy Play.” Revak provides some great tips for players looking to improve their game and avoid common mistakes that can cost them points.

Thank you for reading, and we wish you all the best of luck as your season finishes up.



By Jon Gordon,

There was a time in most of our lives when we had no fear-that feeling when we jumped from the jungle gym and slammed our little bodies to the ground. Perhaps it was when we went on our first roller coaster, or when we were in high school or college and felt that there was nothing we couldn’t do.

No goal was unattainable.

We were an unstoppable force that would think of something and then make it happen.

Then, as time goes by, the world tells us more frequently that we can’t do what we want.

The doubters laugh at our goals and try to persuade us from going after our dreams.

They say, “You’re crazy. It’s too hard. Why don’t you do this instead? You should play it safe.”

They act as if dreams were meant for others but not people like us.

They surround us with negative energy and try to instill their own fears and insecurities in us.

We not only begin to know the word “fear,” we start to understand what it’s like to be fearful. With so many people telling us we can’t do something and so few telling us we can, it’s hard not to let fear into our lives. Unfortunately this is how many of us go through life.

Whether you are 20 or 50, many of us become so scared of losing what we have that we don’t go after what we truly want.

 We play it safe and hold on so tight to the status quo that we never experience what could be.

We believe the doubters

and don’t take chances

 that will move us one step towards our dreams.

 I call this “playing to lose.”

We see this in sports all the time when a team has the lead.

They start to think about how not to lose instead of how to win.

They hold on so tight to their lead that they start playing safe and scared. You can see it in their energy and body language. As a result the other team takes chances, plays with no fear and eventually gains the momentum and wins.

To live a life filled with positive energy we must learn to repel the energy of fear. Whether it comes from within or from another person, we must overcome fear and adopt a “Play to Win” mindset.

Playing to win requires a commitment to yourself that even if you fail,

 you will

never give up

and never let your goals and dreams die.

Those who play to win know that success is not given to us. It is pursued with all the energy and sweat we can muster. Obstacles and struggles are part of life and only serve to make us appreciate our success.

If everything came easy we wouldn’t know what it felt like to truly succeed.

Obstacles are meant to be overcome.

Fear is meant to be conquered.

Success is meant

to be achieved.

They are all part of the game of life and the people who succeed play to win and never give up until the game is over.

Will you make

 the commitment

to Play to Win?


Rimmed pucks are lazy and bad for breakouts

Greg Revak, March 5, 2023

Many hockey minds have a disdain for rimmed pucks when breaking the puck out of the defensive zone. They’re seen as a lazy play made by a player who really doesn’t care much about the pass receiver.

These rimmed pucks are some of the most difficult pucks to corral and restrict players from being able to smoothly make the next play. Put another way, a rimmed puck is basically the hockey equivalent of kicking the can (puck?) down the road.

Catching rims almost always requires a stop before being able to make the next play. It’s almost impossible to transition to an attack puck and often simply turns into a possession play under any type of pressure.

Rims often end up just clogging up play and being a win for the forechecking opposition. The only scenario where a win can happen is a bump/chip play made to a supporting center or slashing weakside winger, but these are low-percentage plays that often lead to turnovers.

Breakout Research

Rims have been researched as part of forecheck/breakout research from Ryan Stimson and team.

#1 – Rims are the worst at leading to possession breakouts and 2nd it leading to a turnover.

#2 – Rims result in a high number of shots against per breakout. Rims lead to the lowest shots for per breakout.

On the flipside, Stimson’s research found that the rate of over and reverse plays could explain about 70% of possession breakouts.

Offensive Rims

While there are some nice set play rims off faceoffs (e.g. DZ faceoff rim out to speed), most positive rim passes are actually in the offensive zone. The rim release is great offensive concept.

We’ll save that for another day.

Think you got what it takes to make it on the second season of  Letterkenny’s spinoff show- Shoresy? Well they are looking for hockey players aged between 18-35. If you want to give it a shot, check this article out:

Arizona Players- check out this scholarship opportunity. If you have any interest in Cybersecurity this might be worth looking into.

Click here

College Hockey Inc. is accepting applications for the third annual College Hockey Inc. Scholarship, presented by JLG Architects. The grant is awarded in honor of JLG founder Lonnie Laffen, a passionate hockey supporter who passed away in 2020. 

Application link

Players and families, we want to hear from you. If there are any questions, concerns, or if you just want to have a conversation, please feel free to contact us directly. We want to hear from you. Good Luck and Great Hockey!

Thank you,

Team VHC