THE #ESHOW
THE #ESHOW

Episode · 7 months ago

Exclusive Interview (Dave Starman) | Episode 76

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

On this week's episode of the #EShow, we sit down with a special guest in Dave Starman. Starman is most notably recognized as a hockey analyst, but he's also a coach, a scout, and one of the best storytellers we've ever had on the show. In this exclusive interview, Starman takes us through his journey through the hockey world, shares insightful knowledge for those on the broadcasting side of the game, and much much more.

Welcome to the e show with NeilRavin. With over onezero NCAA commitments, the ehl is the proven path tocollege. Turn it up and learn more about the college placement leader at thedivision two and three levels. Welcome to the east show presented by the penaltybox foundation. The foundation's mission centers around their daily motto we take care ofour own as they help out all of those within the hockey community who've experienceda catastrophic event. Learn more at penalty box foundation dot Org. What's up? My name is Neil Raven. This is episode Umr Seventy six of thee show and on this week's episode we sit down with a special guest inDave Starman. Starman is most notably recognized as a hockey analyst, but he'salso a coach, a scout and one of the best storytellers we've ever hadon the show, and this exclusive interview, starman takes us through his journey throughoutthe hockey world, shares insightful knowledge for those on the broadcasting side ofthe game and much, much more. I'm joined now by Dave Starman.He's a hockey analyst, a coach, a scout. where's many different hats. He's on the e show for the first time. Thanks for coming on, Dave Hey flushing beer and I love the hat. Of course he's gotan them wolves hat on his son playing for the you sixteen wolves team thisupcoming season. So big thanks to Andrew Trimble for making this connection happen.So let's get this started. Dave, can you kind of just take usthrough you're a hockey journey. Go as in depth as you want to go. It's you know, it's been. It's been a lot of fun.It's been improbable in a lot of ways and I often say that you know, right place, right time means a lot. And but on the otherside of it, and something I always tell players and young coaches and youngbroadcasters, whoever wants to get into our business, I always say, youknow, preparation and opportunity and luck all have to flow together at any combinationof those two can generally produce the third, and the preparation component is probably thebiggest and that's where it's really helped me through through my path. AndI'm not a former NHL player and I've scouted in the League for twelve years, but I'm not a former nhil player. I've been able to coach at thepro level. I've played a handful of minutes as a pro player andI think I'm talking minutes and but it's been a great it's just been agreat run for me. It started out playing in the Great New York CityOrganization back in New York and you know, took me to to division three universityand just by just by freak luck and phone calls and right place,right time, I went through the Baltimore Skip Jack's as a goalie coache,not a look as a practice goalie, and I was a radio analyst andKenny Albert was my both my home roommate and my broadcast partner. And whileI was in Baltimore an interesting thing, or set of things happen. Onewas very trots was our assistant coach, so I got to kind of learnon his hip and you taught me a time about scouting and prepare wearing apre scout and player valuation and Practice Preparation and Planning and just so just avideo. I mean he was a remarkable resource back then and Joel Quenville wasfinishing his pro career with us in Baltimore after a hundred games in the NationalHockey League, and so he was always in a coaches room of picking berriesbrain because Joel knew that eventually he wanted a coach. So I've got,you know, on the media side of that, Kenny Albert is this kindof a guideline in the radio booth and I've got Joe Quenville, a verytrots in the coaches rom and you know, that was pretty good. And wewere the caps affiliate and Jack Button was ahead of Scouting for Washington andJack was a legend in the business. And you know, Jack Really helpedme out by giving Kenny and I some stuff to do regarding the team andyou know, gave Kenny a lot of number stuff to be some scouting stuffand some given some opinions on some players and you know, and then it'sfunny like tying that all together, may being a goalie guy. Our goaliecoach was bar and Stralo, who was the godfather of US goaltending. SoI mean I was talking about right place, right time. I had some incrediblepeople to learn from and and go to and ask questions for and andthat was really my start. So you...

...know, I went through there tovarious stops. I was an associate head coach in the Central Hockey League withthe making whoopee, and that was, you know, one of the alltime great stints of my life. You know, I was the video coachfor the Atlanta Nights when when Scott Gordon was there as the head coach andJohn Paris junior right for him, and so and I've had my chance tobe head coaching pro hockey. You have my chance to be head coaching JuniorHawk and straight through and and and scouting the league. And you know not. Obviously there's the broadcast side, which is, you know, been eighteenyears now doing games on TV and college hockey and that's been taking a lifeof its own. So I mean, I'm a really lucky guy, II I always tell people this. I don't know if there's a formula thatI can bottle up for you other than saying that be a student of thegame and research like crazy and be incredibly overprepared, because when you are,it tends to lead to really good things. Yeah, and you got all thoseJersey's behind you as well. I know I can see one in theNew York bobcats, which is kind of funny how this all ties together withhockey, because when you coach them in the Atlantic junior hockey league, that'swhat became the eastern Hockey League. Right. It's funny how everything plays itself outover the years. But with hockey, with everyone that's in this sport,there's highs and lows throughout a career. You just kind of went through yourcareer right. There was there ever a low moment or two way youthat said to yourself, maybe this isn't the right business for me and thoughtabout getting out of it? Oh, I would say, almost at ayearly basis, that that went through my mind when I when I was whenI was in when I was sort of in the middle stage, and that'swhen the progress started to slow and you know every year when you first start, you make major strides and major games and and then then it starts toslow down a little bit. And there were times where you'd get up forjobs eating get it for different reasons, whether somebody hired their cousin or theirson or their nephewer. You know, you always run to that situation wherewhere guys might hire their friends supposed to somebody else and there's a ton ofqualified people out there. It's I never felt like I lost that the peoplethat I was incredibly more qualified than I just you know, there are timeswhere it's not right place, right time, and I'll never forget this. Iwas up to the video coach job of the Washington capitals, said tobe the maybe the late s early I think was right up to my stintwith with the making whoope was over, and just before I wanted to bethe coach of Memphis and you know, they went in a different direction andI that that was one of those times I thought to myself, you knowwhat, I really hate the game and I'm done. And you know,it took about a day to get through that thought and yeah, back intoit. And I would see everybody in our business probably start about getting outof it at least, you know, ten times, unless you just ledthis enchanted career and have to worry about it. But it's the game,teacher, and humbles you, but it also empowers you and there are timeswhere when you're staring to the abyss of what am I going to do next? In his business, you wind up manufactories, something a lot that goesback to what I say is if you're prepared and you're ready to meet whateveropportunity comes your way by being well versed and diversified in your portfolio as ahockey person, and things can come your way. And and that's when youknow, jobs start to find you, as opposed to you starting to findjobs. And I brought that up because it's so unique for the coaches thatwe have in our league, obviously, where a league that's established based offhelping players advance the next level, but broadcasters, coaches officials as well.But, like you said a few times so far, timing as everything.How often do people come to you for advice and you feel like you haveto use use the word patients at times to tell people to be patient andwait things out? Well, it's funny because the more times that I've gottenask for advice, it tends to enforce one thing that I can't help atall in that isn't getting older. And it's amazing where I don't know whenthis happened, but I've gone from being the guy that was always asking thequestion, that seeking out mentors for advice, and trust me, I still do. I mean I pick I pick coaches and GM's brains and scouts brainsdaily to try to learn more about the game and I am an avid studentis game. But now all of a...

...sudden it's the other way like nowI've got the twenty four, twenty five year old kids or the college kids. We go to a Gamer, the young coaches are young scouts. Thateverybody. You know, I got a ton of phone calls. It atleast a couple of week, but I mean like it just seems to multiplya lot and I'm honored to get these calls. Don't get me wrong,I love it and because I love to share what my experience was or whateverI can contribute to somebody else's career. But it's amazing how many of thosecalls of come in and and I enjoy sharing what, you know, myjourney was and what my path was and how it happened and I like Isaid, just goes back to I think there's some cornerstones of career building andthat's one of the things that I share with with a lot of these youngerpeople and and I say to them exactly what you just said. You know, patience is a is a big part of it. But you you've gotto be patient but proactive in the same vein like you just can't sit thereand hope something's going to happen. You have to go and make things happen. But there are days where you might make thirty phone calls and nothing comesof it. But it could be a week or two down the line wherethat phone call starts to pay off because somebody knew somebody and hey, theydon't have a job for you, but they know somebody else does and andthat's where the ball starts to roll a bit. So I think that preparationand patients are two things that go hand in hand, especially in our industry. And what's so crazy about this industry that I've noticed this everybody knows everybodyelse. Did you ever come across a situation throughout your career where you maynot have agreed fully with a decision that was made or something that was said, but you knew that you couldn't publicly, you know, say how you feltout loud because that person may know someone. It was all going tocome full circle for you at some point. You stay in this business a longtime, when you learn how to agree, to disagree and they keepyour mouth shut doing it and I think it's a I think it's a keycomponent and and I'm not saying be a yes first, I mean they're they'rethey're probably a couple of jobs that I had that I don't have any morebecause I just didn't agree with what we were doing and I and I saidit respectfully, but I just said, hey, listen, I I'm notquite sure that's the way we should be going here. And at the veryleast I got my opinion out and I felt it was an educated opinion.I felt there was a valid and well fought out opinion. But you know, there are times where people don't agree. The key is you just keep itinside the room. It's like it's it's great less. Similar with coaching. I learned some Barry. Barry and Robbie Laird where the two coaches whenI was a Baltimore Robbie layers the head coach and he was a successful minorleague coach. He's been a terrific pro scout for the La Kings that hasgot a couple of Cup rings now because of it. But you know,burying Robin did agree on everything, but you would never know because when theywalk out of the coaches room. It was a unified front. I'm abig believer that you close that door and sound proof it. You can screamingyellow each other all you want. Well, that's great. Screaming yelling these daysis kind of got out the window. So you can debate all you wantin those in those rules. Well, once you make a decision, oncethe the path is charted, then you've got to buy in, evenif you don't agree with it, as long as it doesn't compromise your baryour morals and your ethics and your core principles. If it's a hockey decision, whether it's something simple like whether I want to for check one two orone three or whatever, you may have put your idea on the table.The head coach may say, well, I want to do it this way. Once that the season gets made, then you lock yourself into making surethat you teaching it the way that the head coach wants to get taught.I just think that is a huge skill in our business and social media makesthat hard and I've often say like a tweets like a bullet, you know, when you hit saying you can't pull it back. Yeah, regardless ofdeleting anything you can have think lives forever. So if you don't agree, takea deep breath, take a walk, write a letter that you never send. The old name Lincoln theory. You know why over the desk,while letters you never sent to anybody. And if you're write it out andget your feelings out. Sometimes it just makes a little bit easier to moveforward. And I definitely want to get into the social media side of thingsbecause you're pretty active on twitter. But before I get there, there isone coaching question that I have to ask you because I need your opinion onit, because I'd asked our guys it and I need your answer because it'sfor some reason there's this trend in our league where we have, I believeright now, five head coach is that...

...are former goaltenders. Why is itthat that position leads to so many coaches in the future and your opinion?It's a great question and it's funny. It's a simple answer. It's tome that's the same reason that catchers make great managers, that is you seethe whole game. The game comes to you, the game goes away fromyou, but you see the game in lanes as opposed to other players.Like there when when you're playing in a regular game it's a sixteen minute game. You know elite players are playing twenty eight minutes. Other guys might playingseventeen. You're watching a lot of the game going East West, like atennis match. You're kind of watching a go ping pong each way. Whenyou're a goaltender, you're and a catcher. You're watching the game came atch youin lanes and scouts. You find out where scouts are sitting in buildings. Most of them sitting in corners. So they can see the game throughlanes. They can see the game through spacing, they can see the gamethrough angles, and I feel like goalie see it that way too. Soonce goalies are finished playing, they've just got this wealth of information in theirheads about how the game spaces itself out and how the game actually gets playedand what some of the cause and effect scenarios are in the ice, becauseit just happens in real time right in front of you. So I've alwaysfelt that from an animals perspective, I've always felt from coach perspective, goaliesee the game so much better than anybody else. And and it's funny nowbecause a lot of times when we're talking about teaching the game to younger playerswithin the USA hockey system, the one thing we preach a lot of ouryoung coaches is tea young players. Now they all play like NHL Twenty orin Nhl Twenty one or whatever, you know, year it is. Yeah, that game is up and down again. Goes North South on your screen.It doesn't go east West. And but as coaches, a lot ofcoaches still hanging the white board up the ones. It's so using them.They still hang the white board up in the White Board is East West.But the kids see the game north South now a lot of times through thevideo games that they play. And I always encourage them teach the game northsouth on your white board, like hang the white board and and so thatyou go and goal to goal, not across and and for a lot ofcoaches they say, Hey, that makes a ton of sense because really inthe video game world that's a lot of kids are seeing the game. It'sfunny because you never really I never thought about that, but you're so right. Whenever you walk into any rank, whenever I see at the white boards, always hanging horizontally like that. So I like that answer. So nowyou did mention when you're going through your career path that things shifted for youup to the booth. Had that always been a vision of years or it'sjust kind of again, timing out at all worked out. It's I don'tknow if when I was a kid I thought about being on air. Itwenty, I I thought to myself I was ever on air, is probablygonna be for the wrong reason, you know, but but I you know, I think that in college it's funny, when I was younger playing goal,there are times where like my goal coulds used to say, you know, obviously segment games down in the five minute segments, and but you gotto keep your mind mentally active with a pucks not you're in. So doplay by play the game. Now I'm not a play by player on ananalyst, but it's funny, like I remember doing play by play in myhead of the Games and think of myself, you know, was just kind offun. But I don't really ever feel like I was wired to bea play by player. I think that's a really special skill that a lotof guys do really, really well and so as my career went on andit started to get started, I remember Kenny Albert saying I want you somegames with me here in Baltimore, and that kind of started the on aircomponent and it almost never stopped. And even when I wasn't really broadcasting fulltime during the course of a season, are still dabbling in it here andthere. It's I love it. I mean I think you've got a greatability to teach the game, that the analysts that care can teach the gameon the air, and I want to leave the viewers with something that theymight not have known when we're all setting done. One or two things,maybe three things, whether it's something about the games, something about their team, something about a player. The Guy. I really take pride to the inform, analyze and entertained component of what my job is on air. Andthe other great challenge is staying out of the way of a game like it's. It's funny. It's a hard lesson to learn when you've got a littlebit of an ego that you want to show people you know what you're talkingabout. Sometimes the most effective analysts are the ones that know how to layout and it was a really important skill...

...that I learned from Ross Molloy atCBS sports network in terms of how to let you play by play guy builddrama and how to stay out of the way of the game. And thereare certain times where you just need to give your play by play guy themicrophone all to himself because they need to build drama. And so it's,you know, much like playing, much like coaching, much like scouting.It's been a continuing evolving education of how to be a real good analyst andI I think I've made some strides in an area but it, believe me, it is nothing way back with and I ever thought I'd wind up doing. But you know, when I look back at it, I'm so gladI have the opportunity to do it and keep doing it. And selfishly,I want to keep the conversation here for a little bit because I fortunately getthe chance to call a bunch of games in our league, in particular finalswhich this past year, the past March, the championship game went into overtime.So I was a playlight play guy and a good friend of mine wasthe color guy. In your experiences as a color analysts when a game,a playoff game, goes to overtime, what are the thoughts that go throughyour head about when the right time to talk? Is it in the extraframe and and how much time you have? That is a great, great questionand I just went through that tire range of checklists last March because inthe NCA men's tournament I want, I was doing the Midwest regional an ourregional final championship game between Minnesota Duluth, where the two time defending national champsand there are drawal in our league, North Dakota. That game when fiveovertimes and it got to the and it got the overtime on two goals inthe last minute and a half of the game that North Dako to scort this. This game was off the charts. It is an absolute classic and Iremember we get to overtime and it was funny because there are a lot ofthings going through my mind. The number one thing going through my minds withsomebody always said it, that is you got to remember the fans, becausethe fans of the two teams are really have skin in this game. Theyare they are now hinged on every last second when that thing goes to overtime, because both of the seasons could potentially end. I will actually both oftheir yeah, it was original final, so both there's gonna end on thenext goal. So you keeping that in mind. You don't want to gettoo cute. You don't want to get you know, want inject a lotof humor in there, like you want to play it straight because those fansare on eggshells and you don't want to screw it them. So that wasnumber one. Number two is you known ever want to talk what a goalsabout to be scored, because overtime goals tend to be classic calls. Youwant to stay out of the way of the call. So I'm thinking myselfpucks inside the Blue Line, in possession with a chance to threaten the net. I'm not saying a word. That was number two, and number threewas the fan basis of these two teams. Are So knowledgeable and there's such deephistory with their two programs, and I know these fan bases well becauseI'm involved with them a lot during the NCHC on CBIA sports network. Theyknow me, I know them. The eastern audience might not know me aswell, but I want to treat these fans to the best possible game thatI can give them while staying out of their way. So a lot ofthese things are going through my mind. So that first overtime, thinking thatit might end quick like I was really once they quiet, but I reallypick my spots and is very staccato during that first overtime. Is this gamestarted to go on. I got back into the game groove that I'm normallyand will still be. Cognizant of what we just talked about, but thelonger that game settled in, the edges are and as much on. Youknow, the turning point is they were when you think that game was goingto end in three minutes of the first overtime. So I do think thatthe rules of engagement change when you get to overtime, especially as the analyst. It's really the play by play. Guys show or girls show. Thiscase, was LEA Hex all for that game and and I just think youneed to compliment the game more than take the game in a direction based onhow you're seeing it. I you really need to let the players play itout and react what a when you need to. What time did that gameend? In that game ended and after it ended, I think about aquarter at a twelve central time, but it's started at thirty, you know, like it was an early start. So I mean I can and it'sfunny. You're gonna laughing to tell you...

...it's every says, you know,Bologny. I felt like I could have gone another three or four over times, and I say this week. I know they couldn't, but with thosetwo teams and my history of those two teams, I had enough information onthose two teams that I could have gone all night like it. What youknow, I mean, I get what if I if I got two teamsI didn't know as well as those two, I'd have been praying for a fastending. But knowing the history of those two teams and how many gamesare those two teams, I'd called or scouted or just watched, like Ifelt like no matter where that game went, I was okay. So as longas a game get going like I was pretty good. The one thingI was always in fear of, as you get a review or a rulesdetermination that you don't know, and I'm a rule book Nerd, but Iwas worried about something going to happen where I'm going to get caught not exactlyknowing what they're reviewing why they're reviewing it. You know that kind of thing.Yeah, that was a my real where I couldn't explain it right awayto the audience correctly. Yeah, it's awesome to hear and I remember thatgame specifically because eastern time was a little bit later and I remember saying tomyself, I have to go to bed, I cannot stay up for the thingthat any longer. But it's cool to hear because obviously, as Imentioned, arch championship game went to overtime this year. We're obviously huge fansof hockey. Wi love all sports, but what I try and explain topeople is what makes hockey different is overtime. So let's hear you kind of explainit now. Why is overtime so special in hockey, and specifically thatFA's that it could end, like you mentioned, at any moment. Allfrom from a coaching perspective, I always told my team's any level ever coach, that what you get to do an overtime stereo or you get under twoor three minutes at a tie game, which to me is essentially overtime.You know, there's no such thing as a bad shot. And This Dayand age where dead angle shots, your shots from below the goal, belowthe dots are outside the Hash Barks, or you're along the goal on likedead angle shots now, or you're like, you know, they're the new greatas. So those shots tend to go in, whereas twenty years ago, with the difference in goaltending, a lot of those shots there were wastedshots or you just did it to maybe produce a crazy rebound or something.So like to me, any shot could be the game ender. That's numberone. A crazy bounce could be the game ender. The other thing is, I often felt an overtime the underdog and overtime now has the same puncher'schance that the favorite does, and that's where games can really turn. Butto me it's overtime is an interesting dynamic. It's what team from the get go. And remember, you know, we know as coaches, first threeminutes of a period you want to be a little bit conservative and just kindof get the period moving and not give up a goal early so that itchanged though Benum of the period. Right for the get go. I thinkit overtime that change is totally like you. From the drop of the pocket yougot to be in go mode. It's fifth gear all the way throughand then, as overtimes go on, it's about learning how to manage thelater part of overtimes where the ice is getting bad and you're getting a littlebit more tired and shifting out thirty seconds. To remember that first overtime you're anoffice, you're defending the end furthest from your bench. So line changeis matter and how many overtimes we see or bad line change or fatigue onthe line change can determine the game. So I think the night at thedynamic of the playing surface, the dynamic of defending a different end, ofbeing further away from your bench. At the pro level and college level,no commercial timeouts and overtime other than when you come out to scrape the icemidway through. I mean it's just that's a whole different game, which tome, is what makes overtime so great. Well, when they get off theAir I'll send you the video of our overtime winner. The New Hampshireathletes will not be happy with this, but the change was the difference therewas. They were the line changement a difference because one player of the tenscares in the ice didn't change and he's stressed it wide and was absolutely wideopen. But you're gonna Laugh when I tell you this on that don't justbecause it's something that's just just dawned them. Remember, as a really young coachI was at a coaching so I was Roger Neilson's coaching supposing this hasto be like the late S, early s, somewhere that range. Idon't remember what coach said it, but one coach said to me, orend this discussion, that one of the...

...things that he looks for in histeam is really, really good faceoff guys. Because I want to make sure yougot really good faceoff guys for the obvious reason of hockey's a possession gameand I want to start with possession of the pocket. But I also knowthat if I go to overtime with the playoffs and I get into these situationswhere I get pinned in, I want my guys to know that they canI seed the puck as off then as they want, because we're going tocome about win the next draw. And it's something you don't really think about. That off the way it is. Stayed with me my entire coaching careerabout how important faceoffs are, and I'm telling you about what level I've beenat. I've tried to carve out five minutes at the end of practice withmy sentiment to work on faceoff technique and I said a ton of videos tomy sentiment to to show them different technique and different ways to win draws andhow to tie up and with our team about how important faceoffs are, becauseI've always felt like if you feel like you can win the next draw regardless, then you really don't have a care in the world, especially that firstovertime. I'm having an ice of pocket. Thank you, havint keep guys onthe ICER for having to take a defensives own draw where the game canbe on the line because you're so confident your sentiment they're going to win thenext faceoff. Well, let's stay there for a second, because you knowwhat I notice? I don't want it. I'm not. I'm not that willmyself, but I noticed with the with our teenage players nowadays, they'reso focused on shooting the pot. They come out and they want to stickhandle and shoot and they're not practice and pick top corners and hit the backlass. How how hard is it to get that five minutes in practice and saythat I know this is not the fun aspect of the game, but howhard is it to say these faceoffs that you're working on right now, thisis going to make or break our wins and losses? How hard is itto teach that lesson? You know what, it's not as hard as you thinkit is, because one of the things that I've done in the past, as I've said, to the centers and depends, I mean something,you know something of reloader guys, younger guys, whatever, but I'll bringthem all in, we'll talk about face off technique and then I'll have themface off against each other. But now we create some competitions, like everyguy wants to win the best of seven. In terms of the seven parks we'regoing to drop there and and there. I also put parameters on like,you know, make you you're the offensive guy, you're the defensive guy, or here's the here's where I want you to try to win this.Like I might put some some rules and regulations into the draws, but theseguys all want to beat each other. So you know, I tell themkeep your own stats. I you know, know who you're beating and depends.You know, we're gonna be on the left, thought the right,Don Offensive, defensive, that kind of stuff. But you know, rememberwho you're beating. Also remember who you're struggling against, because those of theguys I want you to go up against in practice. And it's the samething that I've created with a lot of teams with my penalty killers. LikeI think penalty killing is a privilege and you've got to be ultra competitive tobe on the PK and I'm I'm a big believer in PK units. Iknow some coaches don't mind just rolling over like the next two and they don'tdefine their units as much with their forwards. I'm on the other side of that. I do like to have set groups so they get used to eachother, but I like to pick those groups against each other. Hey,you had six opportunities in this game as penalty killing shifts. How'd you doall? We you know, all six times we were out there, wedid get scored on, you know, but and then here, what's theother group? Okay, we're out there five times and we were pretty goodwe do to give any shots, and you know so we want up toyou. You know I love creating competition. I'm on units because that pushes everyunit to be the best unit out there. And if you've got allthese different units pushing each other to be the best and creating the ice timeand wanting the big shift, we get a pretty good team. So I'venever really found that an issue to work on the things that might seem dull, because athletes want to compete and if you make it a competition then theyare all in it. It wouldn't make a difference it was a competition emptythe water bottles and clean the bench. If you put a competition in there, they're all in there. You Go. And then, sifting back towards thebroadcasting side of things, you mentioned eighteen years on that side of thebusiness as well, doing games, selection shows, you name it. Howmany days in advance, how much time do you truly spend on preparation?That's a really good question. I'll tell you what I think. This seasonis your preparation, and I may can identify how much time goes into eachindividual game. That's hard to do because if I'm seeing a team for thefirst time that season. I will tell you that preparation is probably seven eighthours, you know, between watching some...

...games and calling some coaches and talkingdifferent people, talking to players that week of the game, talking of thecoaches in the game that week and getting your stuff together. So the firsttime you see a team, I think it's much more extensive and then asyou keep going with some of the teams that you're seeing on repeat viewings,it gets a little bit easier because now you're doing maintenance. But I mean, I would say it's a minimum of an hour and a half. Itcould be an acimum of eight, but to me it's a it's a seasonprocess and all those years are scouting the NCAA, as ball was doing gamesthere was much easier because you're seeing teams a lot. But on the otherhand, you know, there there might be times where I spent the weekor two in hockey east and all this had to go out to an NCHCgame and had to reacclimate myself to the teams I was seeing because I hada Boston college on my mind for for the past four days. So butI tell you what, it's pretty extensive and having a wife that's on ouron my broadcast crew. You want to talk about some competition, I meanthere's a little there's a little out between us two in terms of WHO's who'sgot the best story for the game. And he found out what from whom, and that's kind of a fun stuff too. So to put you onthe spot, then, I know you mentioned Kenny Albert's name earlier. Youdon't have to get me a straightforward answer, but is there a broadcaster, playlightplay guy in particular at that when you know you're lined up with thatindividual, there's a little extra excitement in your mind because you're working with thatthat guy or girl. It would be unfair to single out one because I'vebeen so blessed with so many great ones. I like when I look back atsome of the people I have worked with, I fall over and Isaid it was on Acomplie my work with this guy too, and or thislady to. I mean just it's been awesome. But I will tell youthis. I spent the last ten years at CBS sports network work he withbeen holden and he and I have probably done a hundred and twenty, hundredand thirty games together and been was one of those few guys where, nomatter what, you knew he had something to say, no matter what pointin the game it was, no matter whether you're doing alive, open onTV, between periods, whatever. His preparation was painstakingly meticulous. He wasis dialed in, he is energy was incredible. It's just we love theten years that we work together and and been was one of those guys arealways look forward to it because that on thing. I know we're could doa good broadcast, but I knew we're gonna have a lot of fun doingit. So I mean, that would be that would be a recent onefor me, but I mean, I'm just I've had a lot that havebeen so good and each one of them brings a different flavor. Each oneof them brings a different vibe and I can honestly saying with you I'll neversay who was, with the exception of one person. I've never had aplay by play guy where I walked up the building. Is that? Ohmy God, I'm never working with them again. That's so I've been reallylucky, but I guess they they each bring so many, so many differentthings and and that's when any part about it I mean you can really learnfrom your play by play guys because of what they bring to the table.So then different spin as there ever been a play I play person that youhaven't got the chance to work with that you wish you could? There's agood one too. All right, let this is going to sound really,really cocky and it's not meant to be. So take this in the right way. Okay, I've had a chance to do five or six games bikeemeric. Okay, I had a chance to a world junior championship with GaryThorne. So there's two legends right there, and that's that's my one. Iwanted to hear you, if you guys, say that one. Yeah, so I am like that. Those both of those games. I gottaTell You, it took me a few minutes open my mouth because I wasso used to watching them. That and I did stats for both of thoseguys at the beginning of my career when I was in turning a sports channel. So it was odd to be on the air with the guy that Iwas doing stats for at support my career. So I've been. I've worked withJohn Forsdel. He was great. I work with Joe Bennen Aughty.He was great. So I be like the those guys were were tremendous.And Kenny Alberts, another guy work with. You know, we did a couplehundred games together the miners. He was awesome. So I mean it's, like I said, it's just been it's been really cool. I've justI just had so many good ones in terms of one that that I haven'tworked with. That's that's you know, that's a really good one. I'mI'll tell you what. I would have loved to have called a hockey gameon radio with Marvel. Okay, that would have been by one. AndI've been I do remember. I do...

...remember dissecting the press meal at theold Master Square Guard pressure with him. You know, you'd be like that, David. You know, what do you think of the chicken? I'dbe like and I so we've done kind of a food critique thing of times, but we we never did a game together. That would have been agood one. Yeah, okay. So obviously mentioned way back in this asthat your son's playing for the wolves this season, not in the ehl butat the you sixteen level. But I want to talk about the hockey landscapenow because I've had I've had the chance to go out and represent the Leagueof different showcases and whatnot, and a lot of parents are still learning.You know what's taking place because hockey's changed so much over the years and thepath to college has changed so much over the years. Now that you canlook at it from the father's perspective, you know what is the ideal pipelinepath that you'd like to see your son take throughout his career? Where doyou want to see him end up? I want to see him end upin the place that he belongs. I want to see him end up ina place where water always seeks level. I want to see him get tothe level that he can get to where he knows that, no matter whathe did, he put everything into it, he don't leave any stones unturned andwhen he gets it at level, that's the level that he belongs at. That's, to me, is number one. It's it's his journey.Now, it's his path. Now he's in charge of it. It's greatthat my wife's a hockey gall to you know, and she is covered thered wing, she's covered college hockey. She's one some Emmy's doing it.I mean, she's been around the game and around the highest levels of thegame and some of the elite minds of the game for a long time.So she gets it. Yeah, and that's a great thing for Ryan.So I think that, you know, when we when we look at himand again we put him in charge. So he really wanted to play forthe wolves. He felt like the landscape of what you get, you know, playing regular travel youth hockey and in our region was not enough. Youwant to be any Aceh more. He wanted to train more. He reallywanted to chase it. He he feels like he's made strides in the gameand and he wants to try and take this as far as it can go. Whether he's going to be a division one division three player, I haveno idea, nor does he, but the bottom line is he's in chargeof his path now and because of the fact that he is invested in itboth as a student and as an athlete, then we had no problem putting ina situation where he could take major steps. And you know what,if you're playing, you sixteen now and you just say hey, listen,I'm going to play another couple of years and then I'm going to college atEighteen, no matter what. You know that's fine too, but that's nothow he saw it. You know he was he's okay with playing those extracouple of years of junior if he needs to to try to reach his eventualgoal of playing at the highest level possible. And and when I look at thepath, you know what's the best path? The Best, best paththat I think a player could take is the one that makes them the mostuncomfortably comfortable. And it sounds strange, but I don't think taking the takingthe path of least resistance is a good one. I don't think they canthe easy path is a good one. I don't wait too many players thatwere guaranteed spots on teams just because they've been around for a while. Idon't think it helps you. I mean, I think you need to be pushed. I think you need to get an areas where you know maybe thecoaches in your best buddy or maybe I've been playing with the same group forthe last ten years. I get there are times where where I think yourgame can grow when you get away from what you're so used to. Andthe hardest thing to do is leave an easy situation or leave a comfortable situation. But to me, the biggest success stories that I've ever been around arepeople that step way outside their comfort level really early and learn that not everything, not everything is guaranteed, and they were going to be some bumps inthe road and you've got to go stare into the abyss and reintroduce yourself toyou through adversity, and I think that, you know, I think this isa scenario that's going to benefit him because of that. But that's justthe way I feel. I really feel like the player needs to make adetermination as to where they want to take their career and then act upon itand that once they do, they need to live it. So if ifyou're going to go play a higher level of travel hockey and you're going togo play in a different league and you're going to move away from home withsixteen and you better be prepared that it's...

...not going to be easy. Youbetter be prepared that's not going to go your way all the time. You'dbetter be prepared that there are days were to go home because it was easier, and then you have you know, you kind of put your big boypants on and say, Hey, this is the path I chose and I'mgoing to make it work and and it's going to lead me to the successthat I want on and off the ice and on and on and out ofthe classroom. It's a great perspective to look at it and of course,for us, but we don't shy away from selling is that not at everyten players from our league does end up at a division two or three school. You know did the one. Every ten has a path that they taketo get to Division One. But whether it's division one or division two ordivision three, college hockey. From from your perspective again, how hard isit to reach the college hockey ranks? It is. It is really hardand these players are really good players, whether it's Division One, division three, and I'll tell you what, you go watch the Division One Club HockeyGames. I mean this is some really good players and these are players thatinvest in their careers and these are players are grinded it and did everything theyhave to do, where the be in the gym, on the ice,summer hockey, schools, whatever the case is, Spring Leagues, the wholenine yards. These are guys that really, really grinded and girls, you know, College Ocul the women's side is is no easy thing either. SoI think that the numbers will always say that the odds are against you andI think every young player understands that. But the one thing that I willalways tell a player, no matter how hard it is, and and likeI said, it's it's are you going to be special to play at thatlevel. But the one thing I think that people get lost in is theystart look at the numbers and start listening to people about how the heart itis, and I think that should be understood and assume. Once you digestthat component, the next step for you as a player and then, exceptfor you as a family, is why not me that? And if yourmentality is why not me? That path doesn't sun get easier, but itgets straighter and you're not worried about everybody else, you just just worry aboutyou. I the way way, way too many parents are concerned about howeverybody else's kid is playing. Stop worried about how your kids playing. That'sthe only thing should matter. How'd your kid playing? And the one thingon your kids mind should be how do I get better? Every day.What do I need to do to get better every day? Yeah, andand most importantly, is who's ahead of me on the depth chart and howdo I get past them? And that's been my challenge to players straight through. WHO's ahead of you and how do you get past them? Because again, now we're created an eternal competition right like, go chase the guy infront of you, the girl in front of you, go get past themand then identify the next player who's taking the shifts that you want, who'staking the ice time that you feel you deserve. Well, don't go complainingto the coach about it, go do something about it. and to me, as hard as it is to get to those levels, the mindset ofinvesting in yourself and worrying about you I think makes that path a lot easierbecause then, wherever you wind up, you did it and you did iton your own. It's that, it's the look in the near mentality rightthere. Yep, and and now we're kind of transitioning, because I wantedto get to this towards the end, into the USA hockey side of things, because obviously very heavily involved in the USA hockey as well. And thenwith the growth of college hockey. You you look at the Nahl playoffs andnow there's so many players that played called hockey that I'm in the NFL playoffs. With the success that USA hockey's had at the world juniors, tying itall together, seeing all that success, how does that make you feel andhow do you think that helps future players who want to improve in this game? I think it's great. And when USA hockey did, and trust me, they took a lot of abuse, for a lot of people thought theydo a lot and, as it turned out, didn't, that they needto take some baby steps to change the process, and we're just talking aboutthese things. To do is stay in a situation that you've just been apartner for a long time and white change. USA Hockey took some bold steps andincorporating a lot of the best from all over the world and incorporate itinto a really comprehensive program and now we're at the point where it's especially theworld junior level. We can probably send...

...two teams to the world junior leveland both of them whatever chance to medal. And for years Canada would always sendthe team there and they probably could have sent the second one in thatsame scenario and four years kenad would talk about hey will listen. You know, we be guaranteed to gold medal. All of our best you twenty playersare playing, but some of their playing in the NHL and and that wasa feather in their cap and that was great for them. USA Hockey's atthat point now where our best players aren't necessarily playing at the you twenty championshipsbecause some of them are playing in the NHL. And we probably could feelthe second team because of how many really good players we have at the youtwenty level. And and you're seeing it manifest itself at the college rocky level. I think thirty five percent of the in the NHL now has an NCAbackground and I remember when I was doing NCA free agent scouting, you know, one of the things that always struck me was sixty seven percent of theLeague at one point that are free agents. We're all NCA free agents. It'sa longer path. It's probably a stronger path of time for some playersjust because of the fact that you get until twenty four to develop and youcome out and you come out of man it's a yeah, there's a bigdifference to me between a twenty four year old and a twenty goold. Andfor some of those late bloomers, and believe me, there are a lotof them. Chris Koon it's a great example. This Dustin Penner is agreat examples. I mean there are some late bloomers that need a little whileto find their stride and get it all together. And you get a playerthat that all of a sudden grows eight inches through high school. I meanyou're playing a different game at six foot four than you were at, youknow, five foot nine. I mean it's just it's a it's so yougot to learn how to use your legs in your arms and course, strengthand center and gravity and it takes a while to restructure your stride and allthose things that might have been easy to you and you were smaller. Imean, it's a different game. So those late bloomers they need some time. Then the game is also gotten a little bit more complex. I meanI think right now defenseman take longer to developed in goalies because playing defense,a modern Defenseman, I mean that's a really unique role. Right now it'syou think of a MIDIAN and Lacrosse. It's just they see the whole gamethere in the middle of you got forwards up front, you get the goaliebehind you and you're supposed to be equally as helpful to both sides and andyou're right in the middle of it all. So I tend to think that thatthe college route gives you a chance to practice four times a week andplay twice, which should be the youth hockey model across the country and thefact that it is in is a joke. But I think that the for practices, the two games model is terrific for development. There are so manygood coaches right now at the NCA level, one, d three, and alot of these coaches are benefiting from a lot of improved coach at theushl level, proof coaching at the North American league level through the tier threejunior a levels. Your players are coming up in there a little bit more, ready to take on more responsibility and that's translating into them being better pros. It's awesome. He's Dave Starman on twitter. It's D starman hockey.Make sure to get in the follow and when you're in La Conia this season, please let me know. I'd love to any final way to squeeze youonto one of our broadcasts. Oh, that's a deal looking forward to.I can't wait for the season to get started as a new adventure for forteam starrymen, and we are ecstatic about it. Awesome. Thank you.You got it. Thanks for listening to the e show. Learn more atEastern Hockey League Dot Org and follow us on Facebook, twitter, instagram andYoutube. Also, be sure to subscribe and get notified when next week's PODCASTis released.

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