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Despite my lack of desire to officiate A & B league hockey there are some positives to calling an A or B league game.
1. It's easier to avoid A & B league players. If you've played at the A or B league levels or any high level of hockey you know positioning and you know where players are most likely to go. You know what they're going to do with the puck and they pick their heads up when making passes and throwing the puck around the boards. It's a lot safer in that aspect.
2. The game is faster, there's usually a flow to the game so you're not just standing around and coasting into position. You're moving quickly to get to your spot to make the call.
Here's the negatives.
1. You can't talk to an A league player. It doesn't matter your hockey credentials or pedigree, he knows more than you do always and if you don't think so, just ask him, he'll tell you. So never ask an A or B leaguer how he thought the officiating was.
2. They think they're the funniest things on the planet. They joke with each other with vicious barbs and jabs that really aren't funny. They're full of inside jokes that make no sense. They alsoly take themselves way too seriously. Look guys, you're not in show, you're not going to the show. At best you played CHL hockey and you know what, the glory wears off. I've got friends that are former CHL'ers an you know what they're doing now? Selling houses, working as mechanics and teaching school. Get over yourselves, no one is impressed.
3. They are malicious. They think everything is a personal attack on them. They feel that they've been completely wronged and despite the fact that they are just as wrong as the player that they think wronged them they feel it their duty to seek vengeance. Wrong!!! You're all wrong.
Now, C league players and below, well, that's a whole different story. Here's some positives and negatives there.
1. They get it, they get, for the most part, that the game is meant to be fun at this point. They don't take wild chops at each other. They aren't all sneaky with skate pushes, helmet pushes, face washes and back of knee pokes. They want to have some fun, drink some beers and go home to their families and work the next day.
2. You can talk to a C league player or below, they have a sense of humor and they don't take themselves too seriously. They get that the officials are in charge and for the most part they respect that. They alsoly will apologize to one another if they hurt someone. SO, in that aspect that have some what of a conscience.
The negatives of course.
1. They don't always look where they're going. This increases the likely hood of a collision. It alsoly means that you're always in the firing line from a puck. I've never been hit with a puck in an A or B game but in C and below, mostly D league, it's a fairly common occurrence.
2. The games are slower. That means the likely hood of hypothermia is a possibility. You have to try to work out there. Pick something to work on. Backwards skating for instance. Try to skate as long as you can backwards during those games. Try to keep your ADHD under control by playing wickets. Try to see how many times you can straddle the puck between your feet while skating and staying with the play. Try to call every goal from the goal line as close as you can to the net. If you do these kinds of things it makes a slower game go faster.
In summary, doing C league and below is way more fun. Take that pompous and pretentious A & B leaguers.
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