Tag Archives: hockey

The quality house hockey programs at KC Ice Center change travel teams

The numbers were down this fall for the first time in many years for players trying out for the Kansas City Youth Hockey Association travel teams.

While that may sound bad, it’s not. The decrease reflects the success of the house program at the Kansas City Ice Center that has been so dramatic.

“Our house numbers are way up, because so many kids stayed with the house program,” said Dean Nelson, general manager of the KCIC. “Our hockey numbers are up, and that is reflected in the number of kids in the house leagues.

KC Ice Center introduces Xtreme Hockey program to develop skills in young players

xtreme hockey at KCIC

APRIL 2017 – Xtreme Hockey is practice gone wild.

There is a theory that 75 percent of hockey comes down to one-on-one battles. The other hockey elements — skating, stick-handling, passing and shooting—are important, but none of those matter if you do not win the individual battle for the puck.

That’s the premise that has spawned a new Spring program at the Kansas City Ice Center called “Spring Xtreme Hockey.” It is an 11-week program that will work on the individual skills of players from the U-8 through the U-14 levels.

KC Ice Center offers many ways for players to grow hockey skills

KC Ice Center Camps

APRIL 2016 – Five years ago, Dean Nelson took a couple of KC Ice Center teams to the International Cup in Blaine, Minnesota, a Minneapolis suburb. The International Cup is a group of age-specific tournaments played at an eight-rink facility, with some top teams from all around the Midwest.

Nelson’s teams got smoked.

Last year, Nelson again took two teams to the International Cup. One team reached their age-group final. The other one went 1-1-2. That just shows how far hockey has come in Kansas City in the past five years, mostly under Nelson’s leadership.

Kansas City Ice Center prepares traveling teams

hockey-travel

SEPTEMBER 2015 – Just because you are not good enough today, cut from your team, does not mean you won’t make it tomorrow. Michael Jordan played on his high school junior varsity basketball team as a sophomore.

That’s what Dean Nelson and his colleagues with the Kansas City Youth Hockey Association (KCYHA) remind youngsters who tried out—unsuccessfully—for traveling teams for this fall and winter. With the merger of the youth hockey organizations from around the metro area, the traveling teams have all been combined and there are fewer spots to fill.

Future is bright for youth hockey at Kansas City Ice Center

KCIC-ice-skaters

JULY 2015– Four years ago, Dean Nelson came to Kansas City from Rochester, Minn., to be the assistant manager of the Kansas City Ice Center. From one hockey hotbed to another, right?

Not so much.

But in four years, Nelson has changed the way hockey is viewed, especially by the youth in the area, nearly doubling the number of kids involved in the game in Johnson County.

KC Ice Center spring figure skating show set for May

KCIC-ice-show

MAY 2015 – If you have the ability to ride around on a 3/16-inch sharpened blade of steel on a sheet of ice, or if you like watching others who do, the Kansas City Ice Center has something for you in May.

The four-on-four hockey leagues that started at the beginning of April will run through the end of May. One of the tiers of an adult league in cooperation with the Independence Events Center will take up the first weekend of the month.

But the big event is the KC Ice Center Spring Figure Skating Show. In its third year, the program will have close to 100 skaters take part in an Oscar-themed event the middle weekend of May.

Wide-open success with 4-on-4 hockey at Kansas City Ice Center

APRIL 2015 – There are two ways to define success in the world of sports business: participation and wins. Or maybe it’s wins and participation.

Either way, the folks at the Kansas City Ice Center can call the switch last spring to a four-on-four competition a success. After years of running a spring season of regular five-on-five leagues, the KCIC switched to a four-on-four competition and it paid off.

‘Everyone Has A Role’ with the Kansas City Jets

KCIC-Jets Hockey

JANUARY 2015 – There may not be an “I” in “team,” but Gary Emmons says there is an “I” in “win.”

Emmons, the former Kansas City Blades star coaches the Kansas City Jets, the top traveling hockey team in the Kansas City area that makes its home in the Kansas City Ice Center.

Emmons stresses to his team that each player on the roster has a key role in the success of the team.

“Everyone has a role,” he said. “Not everyone can be Wayne Gretzky. If I can get everyone playing in their own capabilities and accepting the role they’re in, we’re a much better hockey team.”