AHAI Newsletter                                                                                           Volume 1 Issue 4
Website     Inside AHAI     Events     American Developmental Model (ADM)     
OneGoal    Tournaments     Contacts
Tony Rossi Retires from USA Hockey
HEY PARENTS! Don't "Get On" the Officials
Tale of the Tape: Blackhawks Stanley Cup Favorites
"Like" AHAI on Facebook
IL Natives Honored at USA Hockey's "A Night of Tribute"
"Goals Beyond Hockey" - AHIHA's Mission
Officials' Corner
AAA Hockey: The Early Bird Gets the Worm
Wanted for NIHL: True Athletes
Road to the Stanley Cup

With more than five decades of volunteer service to USA Hockey, Rossi, a native of Chicago, has made tremendous contributions to the game in both time, resources and expertise. AHAI is one of the strongest USA Hockey affiliates in the country, and Rossi was a big part of its formation and growth. 


Tony began his administrative career in hockey in the 1970s in Illinois when he started a local hockey club for kids. Rossi was elected to the USA Hockey Board of Directors in 1983, and was named a director of the Central District in 1989. In 1995 Rossi was named USA Hockey Treasurer where he helped develop the USA Hockey Foundation to promote the growth of hockey in the U.S. Rossi was elected USA Hockey Vice-President in 2003 and most recently was elected to the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Council in 2008. He was re-elected to the Council at the 2012 IIHF General Congress in Tokyo, Japan. Before retiring, Tony served as USA Hockey's VP and international council chair. He's served in various leadership capacities with USAH since 1983.  Although retiring from USA Hockey, Tony will remain on the board of the IIHF.


Last year I completed my Level 3 CEP Clinic and took the required Age Specific Module for the age level I coach - Pee Wee. I am moving up to coach these players this season at Bantam. What am I required to do to coach them at the Bantam Level?


Your Level 3 is good for two years, so you are okay with your Level 3 CEP certification - UNLESS the Bantam team you will be coaching is a Tier I or Tier II National Tournament bound team. If so, you must complete your Level 4 because you are in your 4th season of coaching.  Now that you have moved to a different age level team - Bantam, you will be required to take the Bantam Age Specific Module.


Editor's Note:  Readers may email any questions they may have to ASK THE COACH to be answered in future issues.

The media reports incidents of unsportsmanlike and sometimes illegal conduct by sport parents. And most of us have witnessed (or at least heard stories about) the very real problems created by uninformed parents who simply "go too far." However, an even worse-case scenario involves parents who don't get involved and never show up for games or practices.

"One of the things we have to do is to teach parents to respect the game, the coaches, the players, and the referees-all the things that go into making this activity happen." -Dale England, Past President, Winnipeg Minor Hockey Association

Fortunately, the vast majority of parents behave appropriately at youth sport events. But the minority who misbehave can spoil it for all the rest. It takes only a few inconsiderate parents to turn what should be a pleasant atmosphere into a nightmare for all concerned. Click HERE for important reminders about parents' behavior toward on-ice officials.


By virtue of record and seeding -- as well as a poll of 19 NHL Network and NHL.com panelists -- the Chicago Blackhawks are the favorites to win the 2013 Stanley Cup Final, which begins with Game 1 on Wednesday at United Center (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, RDS).

But are the Blackhawks the better team? It's a hard call to make because the finalists have not met on the ice this season and haven't played any common opponents because of the intraconference schedule used during the 2012-13 season.

In the end, the seven-game series will determine who is the better team -- as it always does. But who wants to wait that long? Instead, NHL.com writers Shawn P. Roarke, Dan Rosen, Arpon Basu and Corey Masisak break down the teams in key categories to find out which team has the overall edge entering the series. Not surprisingly, the Tale of the Tape came out in favor of the Blackhawks, but it was a close contest throughout the categories.


Click HERE to read full article 


The 2013 Annual AHAI meeting was held on Sunday, June 2 at the Hyatt Woodfield. The meeting had a quorum and was well attended with Presidents or Club Representatives from High School, Tier I, Tier II, Tier III and Park District programs. During this meeting there were many topics covered - the OneGoal and Grow the Game Programs, A Step aHead Program, new communications initiatives, the SafeSport Program and changes in AHAI's registration process.  Mike Barrett, Illinois Referee-in-Chief/Supervisor of Officials addressed the increase of both verbal and physical abuse of officials; you will find an open letter to our members from Mr. Barrett regarding this disturbing trend in this issue of AHAI's e-Newsletter.  Five members of AHAI's Board of Directors were re-elected to their current positions:  Jim Powers, Pete Humann, Chuck Smith, Jim Clare and Tony Cachey.  Congratulations, gentlemen! Please click HERE for the full recap of the 2013 Annual Meeting.


In our next issue I will update you on USA Hockey's Annual Congress which took place June 5-8 in Colorado Springs at the Hotel Elegante. Those updates will include rule changes and other programs that impact the AHAI membership.


Thanks you and have a safe summer!


John Dunne
Illinois Natives Honored at USA Hockey's
"A Night of Tribute" Dinner

Colorado Springs, CO

The continued growth and development of USA Hockey would not be possible without the contributions of a network of dedicated volunteers. These individuals share in USA Hockey's success and accomplishments year after year. Their selfless work and commitment continue to make a difference in the sport of hockey and in the lives of the people who play the game.  Congratulations, Laura, Rich and Jim!

Laura Johnson - 5 years
Rich Becker - 15 years
Jim McGlynn - 20 years

Click HERE for full article
"Goals Beyond Hockey"  is AHIHA's Mission
Celebrates 40 Years of Service to the Hearing Impaired Hockey Community

Established in 1973, by Chicago businessman Irv Tiahnybik, in cooperation with NHL Hall of Fame and former Chicago Blackhawk Star Stan Mikita, The American Hearing Impaired Hockey Association (AHIHA) has contributed to the growth and development of deaf and hard of hearing players from all across the country for 40 years. Today, AHIHA Ambassador Tony Granato, former NHL player and now the assistant coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins, along with AHIHA Head Coach Jeff Sauer continue the leadership role started by Mikita and Tiahnybik. Click HERE to read full history of AHIHA. 


The mission of the American Hearing Impaired Hockey Association is to instill confidence and self-esteem in deaf and hard of hearing athletes. AHIHA helps these athletes improve their skills and understanding of the game, so they are better able to participate in their mainstream athletic programs without limitations. The special needs of deaf and hard of hearing athletes are first and foremost AHIHA's hockey environment.  

This week marks AHIHA's 2013 Summer Hockey Camp f
or Deaf and Hard of Hearing Hockey Players at 7 Bridges Ice Arena in Woodridge, Illinois.  The camp is open to boys and girls of all ages and skill levels - from the first time skater to the high school all-star and beyond! Participants experience a week of hockey training from top level coaches from around the country and USA Deaf Hockey Team Olympians. In addition to receiving first class hockey training, AHIHA campers also participate in scrimmages with volunteer teams from all over Illinois.


 "When we get them together, and it's kids from all across the country, the chemistry is unbelievable right away. There is specific sign language we use and in most cases communication is easy because it's hockey. They're just normal players who want to play the game and don't hear well. They bond together well, and we've had success on the international scene." - Head Coach Jeff Sauer
For information about Deaf/Hard of Hearing Hockey, please contact Jeff Sauer at coachjsauer@gmail.com.   
Officials' Corner
By Mike Barrett, IL Referee-in-Chief/Supervisor of Officials  

What a great game we all participate in! A game combining skill, speed, strength and smarts all come together for the purpose of skating, shooting and scoring. And we would all love it to stay exactly that way.


In rare circumstances, those same qualities which make our game great could also contribute to an emotional response by coaches, players and fans. Recently, this emotional response increased the incidence of inappropriate conduct by coaches, players and fans towards the officiating community.


Last year, AHAI and IHOA saw a spike in conduct which was wholly inappropriate and, in at least 4 separate circumstances, resulted in physical confrontations between officials and coaches or parents. In each of the physical confrontations, either the police were called to the rink or the proper affiliate was notified and suspensions were handed down.


Recently I was afforded the opportunity to meet with a number of Tier II Presidents to discuss how the Illinois officiating community needs their help and the help of their coaches, players and fans. We need their input in order to get out in front of these emotional situations and eliminate these situations in the future.


AHAI and IHOA willingly provide speakers who will attend organization functions and speak with administrators, coaches, players and fans. These discussions identify the issues common to everyone participating in ice hockey and range from playing rules to zero tolerance and everything in between. The discussions are informative and include a question and answer period. Historically, those organizations participating with these discussions saw a dramatic decrease in the number of zero tolerance violations, game misconducts and match penalties.


Anyone interested in participating with this program may send me an email to mbarrett@ahai2.org along with available dates, times and locations and we will make every effort to attend these meetings and conduct the necessary discussions.


In the meantime, have a great summer and GO BLACKHAWKS!

AAA Hockey:  The Early Bird Gets the Worm

AAA tryout season for Squirt, Pee Wee, and Bantam teams for the upcoming Fall season are complete.  Those that made the team are quite excited and those that did not will have had a chance to measure their skills against potentially the top players at their age level.  These skaters will hopefully take the experience as a positive motivator to improve their skills to make a run at one of our 4 AAA teams in Illinois next season.  One question that is often asked is why AAA tryouts are held so early when AA tryouts cannot occur until September 1.  There are several reasons why this order makes sense.


AAA hockey is the highest level of youth hockey in the state.  Holding AAA tryouts early allows the AA clubs to identify those skaters they will lose to AAA before they have to plan their season.  Imagine the challenge if both AAA and AA were holding tryouts at the same time. 

Click HERE to continue reading

Wanted for NHL, all hockey: True athletes

WHL coach Brent Sutter says kids who focus on hockey year-round are stunting their development

Today, more and more parents are enrolling their kids in hockey 10-12 months of the year, with the hope their children will become better players. But is it working? Brent Sutter says he feels that too much hockey, especially for young kids, will hinder them rather than help them. "You just don't have as many players today that are as good athletes as they used to be," Sutter said recently. "Too much today, especially in young players, is focused on hockey 12 months a year. They don't play soccer, they don't play baseball or tennis or the other things that people used to do." Consider Sutter has won two Stanley Cups as a player, scored 102 points with the New York Islanders in 1985 and played 17 NHL seasons. He coached the WHL Red Deer Rebels from 2000-2007, and then spent five seasons as an NHL head coach in New Jersey and Calgary, and now he's back coaching the Rebels.  


Click HERE to read full article 

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