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Rookie Duties: Time to Regroup

So the march continues. As predicted, this past week has been a little stressful. Originally, I was hoping that by now I’d be playing offers from two CHL clubs against each other. Instead, it feels like I’m starting from scratch, but in reality it’s even worse.  At least before, when I called coaches to pitch Matt, I had a product that I could put on the ice. I know Matt will be a very solid player in the SPHL at the least, and I’m sure once we land him with a team, he’ll have no problem rising through the ranks. However, at the moment I’m trying to sell teams on a player with no professional experience, without impressive offensive statistics, no exposure from professional scouts and, oh by the way, he’s injured. It suddenly seems as if Matt’s first professional contract will be as big of an accomplishment for me as it will be for him.

To give you an idea of how my days are spent when trying to overcome some of these obstacles, here’s a breakdown of my past Wednesday.

8:30am: Wake up and have some breakfast, let the dog out.

9:00am: I sit down at my desk and begin going through my numbers for GM’s in the CHL and SPHL. When I call Oklahoma (where Matt was scheduled to start camp the next day), I get a secretary. She tells me that the coach is on the phone and asks if I wanted to be put through to his voicemail. I leave a message letting him know about the situation.

9:13am: Make my second call. This time I go straight through to the GM’s voicemail, leave another message, and move onto my next team.

10:48am: Six calls into my day, I finally get a real live person on the other line (mainly because this is one of the few coaches who had given me his cell number in the past). Unfortunately, the team’s roster for main camp is already set. The coach asks me to send over Matt’s hockey resume and I let him know I’ll get that to him right away.

11: 07am: Receive a call back from the Assistant GM from Oklahoma. He explains that they only have one spot open on their main camp roster which is reserved for one player from the free agent camp Matt was signed up for. It’s not fair to give that spot away to Matt without ever seeing him skate and I can’t really argue with that. At least it looks like we’ll get Matt’s deposit for the camp back.

11:45am: After calling about 15 teams, I’ve still only gotten two people on the phone and no good news so far. I’m getting a little frustrated so I decide to go blow off some steam at the gym.

11:47am: As I’m walking out the door I get a call back from a SPHL GM. He asks me about Matt and likes the fact that he played four years at the DIII college level. I explain that Matt probably could skate if he needed to, but as his agent, I don’t want his minor injury turning into a major one so I’m not going to allow him to take the ice. I’d rather have the team thinking I’ve got issues rather than give him the idea that Matt is soft or physically compromised. The GM lets me know that they’re really weak at defense and have only signed one blue-liner so far. He asks me to send over Matt’s resume and tells me he’ll get back to me within the next couple of days. Finally a possible break!

Noon – 1:00pm: Workout.

1:41pm: Call my partner back at my home office and ask if the digital version of Matt’s resume is ready to send out. We’ve had a problem with our outside graphic designer, so the full kit is going to take another day or two. I really need to stay on this lead so I’m insistent on getting something out to this GM. All I have on my computer is a Word document with Matt’s player bio, an Excel spreadsheet with his career stats, and a few photos…it’s time to throw something together fast.

1:53pm – 3:17pm: I’m no graphic design major so it takes me a while to put together something that I feel confident sending out. To be honest, I’m pretty impressed with the finished product.

3:17pm – 4:23pm: At our firm we make sure that all our documents we send via email are in a PDF format. Of course my PDF conversion program isn’t working and unfortunately I’m also not Windows certified. I download some updates and try some free online conversion tools but either the fonts and format are being altered for whatever reason or the results are coming back with a big “Trial Version” watermark on the document.

4: 27pm: Finally realize I’m an idiot and can convert the document through Word itself. I get the document sent out and can at last take a deep breath. All I can do now is wait and hope for a promising phone call.

5:00pm – 12:30am: Head into the ice rink where I’ll be driving the Zamboni for the next few hours. As I explained before, I’m not making any money off my agent work at the moment so I need to get income from somewhere else. At least I still get to be around a rink and my boss is actually a former teammate of mine. Working at an ice rink can be kind of depressing seeing how I have my law degree, but sacrifices need to be made if I want to achieve my goals.

By the time I woke up Thursday morning I still hadn’t heard anything from any teams. None of my voicemails have been returned besides the two I mentioned, but I don’t want to stand pat. I send out Matt’s resume to the coaches and GMs I left messages for the day before…now’s not the time to give up.

Fortunately, Thursday night I did get some good news. Matt returned home and had an appointment with a specialist – apparently his shoulder isn’t as bad as we initially feared and he should be cleared to play after another week of rest and rehab. Thursday was also Matt’s birthday and although I’m sure it’s not the present he was hoping for, beggars can’t be choosers.

Saturday afternoon I spoke with the SPHL coach that was interested in Matt. The team was still in camp so he didn’t have any real helpful answers for me, but he told me to get in touch with him early this week. Looks like I’ll be placing another call to him later this afternoon. As usual, until next week, I’ll be sure to keep updates posted on my twitter account.

3 replies on “Rookie Duties: Time to Regroup”

Scott, keep up the good work. I enjoy these updates. Your persistence on behalf of your client and your own career is admirable and will undoubtedly pay off eventually.

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