Where to Play, USPHL or NA3HL

There are plenty of different facets that go into whether a league is good or not. As most can agree both the USPHL and NA3HL have done plenty of great things to get themselves to the top of the tier 3 spectrum. With that being said I believe the biggest thing to look for is commitments. Junior hockey for most players is a way to develop there game and ultimately get to the next level. College Commitments is a great way to gauge how a league is doing in the area of developing players. The USPHL has 300+ commitments while the NA3HL has 30+. Those numbers are pretty far apart, however there are reasons for that. First, the USPHL has a few different levels of play going from Premier being the top and Elite being right under that. So they have more players and a higher level of play than the NA3HL. The NA3HL has direct connections to the NAHL, which is a huge plus when deciding on where to play. Playing in the NA3HL has its perks and having the chance to get called up any given weekend to a tier 2 league is what every tier 3 hockey player wants. The USPHL has larger numbers because they have more leagues. The USPHL Premier is equivalent to the NAHL and the USPHL Elite is equivalent to the NA3HL in levels of play. Therefore if you combine NAHL and NA3HL commitments together than it would total of 200+. At the end of the day the number of commitments each league has is not as relevant as some other variables that should be included in a players decision on where to play. I played in the east and the midwest during my junior hockey career. I would have to say that during my time on the east coast you definitely see a lot more scouts at each game. During regular season games you would see NHL and NCAA scouts constantly. The difference between east coast and mid west junior hockey is simply location, in the USPHL the teams are much more condensed in the sense that the teams are very close to surrounding colleges. So it is easier for scouts to catch a junior hockey game. The NA3HL and NAHL are definately more spread out around the United States which makes it more of a hassle for scouts to get to games. But they do in fact have a lot of showcases which will pull in a boat load of scouts from all college levels, so don't get too caught up in that, as they say if you are good enough you will be found regardless of where you play. Both leagues are a great place to end up. The NA3HL and USPHL have tremendous track records for player development and deserve to be thought in high regards.

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