Are You A “Me” or “We” Player?
Posted by Greg Carter
There are two types of hockey players, a player who thinks of themselves first, and the player who is unselfish, and puts the team first. If you want to play at the next level, your best chance is not by being a “me” player focused on personal stats and accomplishments, but instead by being a player who makes the entire team better through unselfish play.
Someone summarized a recent game by saying that it seems like parents used to come to the rink to cheer on the team, but now they come to the rink to cheer on their child. While every parent wants nothing more than what’s best for their child, hockey is a team sport, and it should be treated that way.
What makes hockey such a great sport is that you celebrate a win, or become humbled by a loss, with your buddies. It can become a major distraction to team chemistry however if a player doesn’t celebrate the win because they themselves didn’t score a goal or make a big play. This is the beauty of the sport of hockey, it was your friends who picked you up and help earned the win so that the next game, it can be your turn to ride the momentum and make the big play.
Every hockey player loves to win! And playing with a “we” versus “me” attitude is a key to this success.
“We” players make the easy pass to their buddy standing on the side of the crease for the tap in goal.
“Me” players take a bad angle shot.
“We” players get off the ice when they can after a good shift.
“Me” players stay on longer than they should.
“We” players celebrate a win, regardless of their personal contributions.
“Me” players celebrate, win or lose, based on how they played.
“We” players win championships!
Coaching hockey and developing skills is extremely rewarding. Players with really good talent need to have a lot of “we” in their game. At younger ages the better players can develop a “do it all” attitude. However as players develop into teenage years, it becomes increasingly more difficult to dominate games. “Me” players need to develop a “we” attitude to play at the next level.
As a college scout recently said to me about a player he was watching “The distinguishing factor for us in recruiting this player versus another with equal talent is that he is selfless and makes the right hockey decisions regardless how it impacts their name in the box score. He puts team success ahead of individual accomplishments. That tells me he understands the game, the team, and that fits in with the culture of my team.”
And just at that moment the “we” player came down on a two-on-one and with an opportunity to shoot from an awkward angle, feathered a saucer pass over the sprawling defenseman’s stick onto the tape of the winger who tapped it into an open net.
With a wink of an eye the scout closed his book and walked off saying I’ll take “we” over “me” every time.
Thanks for reading and we welcome the opportunity to help develop your hockey skills at one of our summer hockey schools located in ten states this summer. Click here for dates and locations!