Minor Grey's Bryce Mattern scores one his goals on Tuesday in Grey's win over Minor White.
One of the most peculiar aspects, and perhaps the most refreshing, of the NOW Prospects Combine, is that actual hockey seems to be the last thing on anyone's mind.
Instead, both the Minor and Major participants are more worried about the dodgeball rules. Or about finding their lunch boxes quickly to spend more time with new friends from across the upper midwest. Or about how long the walk down the street to the pool will be, and if it takes more than 15 minutes, will they get the earliest crack at the waterslide?
Tuesday's schedule was loaded with activities aimed to burn both mental and physical energy for this year's participants. Dodgeball matches were interspersed with a trivia contest about hockey rules and history, along with a speech about social media and its role in a young athlete's life.
After a quick bite, as in roughly eight minutes after the designated hour for lunch kicked in, participants were ready for more. They found all they could handle in a dizzying mix of mini-games, football/team handball, and swimming at the Veterans Memorial Pool.
Over nine hours after they were dropped off at the Veterans Memorial Arena's front doors, players departed, clearly spent after a roller-coaster day.
But, if six years running this monster has taught the Youth Hockey Hub staff anything, it's that the players will show up tomorrow morning more ready to go than any of the adults.