Hey Bulls Fans,

2013-4-18 curdog blogI know it’s still only May and we’re five months away from the start of the season, but it’s already time to start discussing recruiting for the 2013-14 season. It’s a long process filling your roster with 20-plus players, so it’s best to start early.

This season it will be slightly less challenging to fill the roster. Some of the roster will be filled by returning players. Plus, I have not only seen a good deal of players around the league, players have also visited the SF Bulls throughout the season. A number of visiting teams had the opportunity to take in the sights and sounds San Francisco has to offer. At least two teams took the day off to spend it exploring the city, including a trip to Alcatraz. Players in this league often think about where they are living when they consider a city, since the salary cap keeps every team on an even playing surface financially.

Along with recruiting veterans of the league, it’s important to inject the team with youth. Guys like Dean Ouellet and Kris Belan were perfect examples of rookies that proved they have the potential to earn regular spots at the next level. There’s no greater joy than signing a rookie that ultimately moves up to the next level or even the NHL.

Finding those rookies not signed by NHL or AHL teams is a challenge, but a fun one. That’s when I need to use my past experiences as a coach in the junior levels and my resources around North America to learn about quality prospects. I’ll have to make a lot of phone calls to college and junior coaches and agents to see who will be the right fit.

A great resource is the NHL Draft in New Jersey at the end of June. Representatives from all 30 NHL teams will be there, along with scouts, agents, and players. It’s there you can get a feel for what players will be headed to NHL and AHL summer camps. In July, I’ll go to some of those rookie camps to scout some potential players.

It’s obviously tough to scout players in the off-season because there is no hockey being played. But you know from past experience what types of players in certain leagues have had success. You also go off the recommendations of players’ coaches and their teammates. It’s not an exact science, so it’s a process to find the right fit for the organization. It’s going to be another challenging off-season, but I’m looking forward to it.

Go Bulls Go