We sat down with Mike Catenacci 05’ Mississauga Reps to get his take on the Motown Classic:
So tell me a little about this group, how long they’ve been playing together and how beneficial that is.
Yeah that definitely is one of our advantages. This group has been together for 4 years. We’ve made slight changes every year, we made 1 to 2 changes this year but our core has been together for 4 years. We have some kids that are 5 years reps, I took over 4 years ago. They’re a great group of kids, they’re a lot of fun to work with, They’re being successful right now. They were the top dogs last year so they’ve got to be ready to bring their game every night because everyone wants to beat them. It’s unfortunate and tough for the kids to bring it every night, but if you want to be on the top like we were last year that’s something we have to face.
Whats’ it like coming into this year coming in with more of a target on your back? And how that has changed from last year to this year?
I don’t think my boys have ever been through it. Last year was the first time we really had major success. We won the GGHT and lost in the All-Ontarios. Previous years we were in the middle of the pack and we could afford to not show up some nights and still win. but now as a top dog you gotta show up every night, even last place teams in our league want to beat you so they’re going to bring their A game to try to impress the top teams
Is this your teams first year at Motown?
No it’s actually our third or fourth.
Tell me about the experience overall and what keeps you guys coming back?
It’s been a great tournament. It’s ran real well. We like coming to one away tournament in the states and it’s an early tournament as well. It’s in October, obviously. But it’s ran real well, the LEGACY guys do a very good job putting this tournament on and it’s usually a deep tournament – you get some of the best teams from all over the world so its been awesome and it’s going to be a challenging one again this weekend.
How does this compare to some of the other tournaments you guys have done?
I think it’s going to be one of the top ones this year. So it’s already a deep age group, I think, in the GTHL that we play out of, but the american teams are strong too. It’s going to be a good weekend. I’m looking forward to seeing how we match up against some teams.
What do coaches look for when they start looking to what tournament to attend?
I’ve come to this one for 4 yeas because it’s always been deep and I want them to be competitive games. I don’t want them to breeze through Friday and Saturday and play on Sunday no matter what. I want these kids to have to earn to play on Sunday. Sundays are obviously privileges to play, and if it’s an easy tournament you take it for granted. But a tournament like this..you gotta bring it, we only got 3 round robin games and then you’re either out or you’re in..so we’ve got 3 tough games it’s going to be a good challenge..it’s exciting
Our team is best when we BLANK..
Our team is best when we work hard. We’re not a really fancy team. People like to say we’re ugly. we get the job done, but we don’t do in in a fashionable way. we’ve got a lot of skill, but we grind. Our kids work hard and for the most part when they’re on their game, they’re working hard and grinding down on teams. We’re a pretty big team, I think, but when we’re on our game we’re coming at you in waves. I think that’s our strong point.
Theres a huge ontario pretense at this tournament. Why do you think that is?
I think it’s because all the top american teams come to this tournament, and we don’t get to see them much. So it’s a tournament where we can see how we face against different teams, not always the same GTHL teams.
What is considered a success for you guys at this tournament?
Obviously I want to win, winning is the main goal. But if my boys play hard, if we’re coming to compete every game, I see us doing very well. We’re going to lose games that we deserve to win and we’re going to win games that we deserve to lose but if we come out and compete that’ll make me a happy coach by the end of this weekend…and it’s pretty hard to please me.
Whats the biggest challenge right now for you team?
I think the biggest challenge right now is that they’re getting into that grade 8 and grade 9 and they’re realizing different things in life, and it’s my job to jeep them focused and on track to play hockey. They’re starting high school next year and they’re going to have to choose the right group and right path, and it’s my job to be the role model to make sure and to choose the right one. They’re good kids, I already know that, but I want to keep them that way I want to keep them in hockey because I think a lot of these kids have a bright future in the game.
Interested in taking your team to the next level? Visit www.lgshockey.com to learn about more tournaments we offer!
The road to Motown is a long one for some players. Take Brady Scarlett for example. The 11-year-old forward plays for the Central Ontario Wolves, a team that took an 8-hour drive from Ontario to Detroit in order to test themselves against some of North America’s top competition.
Scarlett made the whole drive worth it by scoring a goal in his first ever game at the Motown Classic, en route to a 3-0 win for his Wolves team. The young forward said his favorite parts of the game are “scoring and celebrating,” something he hopes to be doing plenty of throughout the weekend.
He has great chemistry with his teammates and says he’s been playing with some of them since they first started learning how to skate at three years old.
These close connections with teammates are part of what makes the Motown Classic such a great experience for club teams. The road trip to Detroit allows for plenty of team bonding, but also exposes players to teams from all over North America that have their own talented players and unique chemistry they’ve been building for years.
Scarlett is a multi-sport athlete who also plays lacrosse, which he considers to be very similar to hockey in a lot of ways. However, he maintains that hockey is his favorite sport. Regardless of his team’s outcome this weekend, the young forward is enjoying his first experience competing at the Motown Classic and is “having fun at the rink” doing what he loves to do with his friends and family. “I’m most thankful for my teammates, coaches, and of course, my Dad,” he said.
Interested in bringing your team to compete in tournaments like the Motown Classic? Visit www.lgshockey.com and find the perfect event for your team!
Have you guys been to the Motown Classic before?
Yes a couple years ago.
So tell me why you’ve come back to the tournament and why you felt it was so important for your team to play here?
Well first of all the competition here in the midwest is second to none. And it’s an honor for us to come from the east coast, where hockey isn’t the biggest desirable sport, but to come here and face the best competition, that’s why we travel so much.
How does this compare to some of the other tournaments you guys have done in the past?
Well we travel to canada and upstate NY quite a bit, but the candadian teams and ontario teams are good, but it seems like in the midwest here, detroit chicago it seems like everybody comes from everywhere, so it makes it beneficial for all of us.
Being that the talent pool is so rich at this particular tournament, is that another factor of what draws you and your team back?
What it does for us, even back home, we play teams that probably aren’t as talented and don’t push us as much so we get into bad habits, and we start doing some lazy things. When we come here you have to be sharp, you have to be on top, you have to be on the puck, we really can work on things to make our team play a better game.
Is there anything particular you’re looking for coaching this age group?
I’ve coached the 97-96 group, and a lot of really good kids came through that program like Charlie McAvoy playing for the bruins from Long Island, Adam Faunce played on the world junior team and my older son is in the Leaf organization. What we try to do, especially what I try to focus on, is all skill work. You can’t preach it enough. I’d rather take ten minutes in a game and make a mistake, than dump a puck and throw it deep just to preserve a 3-2 lead or something because when you get older it’s those kids who can make plays at the highest level.
What would be a success to you guys?
We’re growing as a team.. it’s early in the season, but I think for us it’s important that we keep growing as a team. So half way through the year and then by the end of the year everybody is buying in and doing the same thing. Listen, most of these kids love to be a little bit selfish, they love to do things a little bit outside their box just because whether their parents are in their ear, or what they want to do as an individual once they learn that when they play a complete game. Tonight we scored 2 to 3 goals where we really moved the puck beautifully to the weak side and really set up a good scoring chance. If we win this tournament, thats great, if we lose in the quarter finals, that’s great.. we’re really focusing on where we are at the end of the year.
Interested in taking your team to the next level? Visit www.lgshockey.com to learn about more tournaments we offer!
Anybody involved in youth hockey knows the life of a hockey parent is no cake walk. It can be a full-time job driving back and forth to the rinks, shopping for equipment, tying skates, keeping the kids energized, and cheering them on at all their games. The Motown Classic is one of the largest collections of dedicated parents in the entire hockey world. We have more than 6,000 players in Detroit this weekend and each one has a support system that makes the whole experience possible.
One parent from Pennsylvania told us the Motown Classic was a chance for her family to come together in one place, a rare occurrence for parents with multiple players in their home.
“We have two kids that play hockey so usually my husband and I are never together, but both of our kids are playing in this tournament so we’re all here together,” she said. “It’s becoming a lifestyle; it’s a hockey community.”
She was also happy to see her children improving as they competed against teams from all over the country. “It’s exciting to see so many different teams come together from all over the place; it’s great competition – fast games and a lot of really good shots,” she said.
Three mothers from a Detroit 05 team said all of the hard work to keep your kids involved in hockey pays off because you get to see the ways the game impacts their lives on and off the ice.
“Hockey is like a family, you make so many lasting friendships,” they said in reference to both their children and the relationships they’ve built amongst parents. “The boys learn sportsmanship and organization, and they have friends who they’ve played with from mighty mites until now.”
At the end of the day, the countless hours are worth it when the kids create lasting memories of the good times they had playing youth hockey–memories many of their parents still have from their own playing days.
A parent who traveled from Chicago said, “you just want your kids to enjoy it and do well, and make sure they’re having a good time.”
If your kids are having a blast at the Motown Classic and you’re interested in future LGS Hockey events, check out www.lgshockey.com and plan your next tournament!
The Isobel Cup will be on display at tournament headquarters (Bill Gray’s Regional Iceplex) this year at the Fire on Ice! Be sure to stop by and check out the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) championship trophy and take your picture with the hardware.
Experience everything Bauer has to offer at this year’s Fire on Ice! The Bauer Experience will be on-hand with some awesome samples and equipment for you to check out. As the primary sponsor for the largest women’s tournament in the U.S., Bauer will be giving away 1X sticks to a select few so be sure to stop by and sample the best gear in hockey.
Take an in-depth look at Honeybaked U-10 experience from the 2017 Bauer Motown Classic with head coach Brian Jardine. Check it out!
Olly and Jacob were on-hand last year to provide some pre-game pep talks and inspiration for participating teams. This iconic duo has become an internet sensation in hockey circles, and for good reason! On the Bench provided endless entertainment, tons of laughs and memories that all of our participants could take home with them. What will the 2018 BMC bring?
We are offering an exclusive opportunity to all teams that register early for the Bauer Motown Classic. Partnered with First Scout Productions, we will feature one team from each division in a mini-documentary centered around your team and its experience at the BMC! To enter, simply register your team before June 1st and we will select the winners for the upcoming tournament on June 16th!
There are 15 different programs from Ontario slated to compete in this year’s Bauer Motown Classic, including some of the top teams in Canada! The Toronto Marlies, Toronto Jr. Canadians and Don Mills Flyers are among them, think your team has got what it takes to compete with Canada’s best?