Edmonton Oilers, No. 1 pick overall in 2010 NHL Entry Draft
"Love for the game. Being focused and having fun."
Chicago Blackhawks senior advisor hockey operations, winner of nine Stanley Cups, Hall of Fame inductee
"It comes from different places, with different programs now. The bottom line is desire."
Ottawa Senators, Assistant GM
"You have to approach every single game that you play as if there are 10 scouts in the building. You have to show huge effort - if you show huge effort, if you show tremendous passion, scouts will are willing to overlook your warts, if they see you really care, that you really want to play."
Detroit Red Wings, GM
"During the winter, play with passion. Passion is determination, competitiveness."
Calgary Flames, GM
"Leave home when you're 16, play for a year, see you much you miss home. That's what we did… [Must have:]natural ability and character, and they probably hook together."
Vancouver Canucks, Assistant GM
"In today's modern hockey environment it takes a combination of hockey sense and coachability and intelligence. Teams are scrutinizing our players a lot more than in previous years. Majority of young players to today are so well prepared. …[Must have:]Coachability, willingness to learn."
Toronto Maple Leafs GM
"One thing all these kids have in common is they work hard. Some are great athletes, some are good athletes - to make it here, they have to work hard."
Phoenix Coyotes, Director of Amateur Scouting "We just look for guys who come out and play hard and work hard. …We're looking for the skilled player and the guy who competes. …The biggest thing is you've got to work hard."
Pittsburgh Penguins, GM
"I believe it takes a great deal of commitment. …It takes good parents, a plan for the kids. I think most of the kids who have gotten drafted here today have all those things. A plan in terms of who should I be working out with, should I be playing one sport, two sports, three sports, should they go to prep school, should they go to college, should they go the junior route. … A lot of kids are tremendous players, if you don't have a proper plan they burn out, they lose interest. It's a very difficult thing…. To get there you have to take the proper steps. …. The more knowledgeable [parents]are the better."
How do parents develop a plan? "Talking to different people, talking to different coaches, I like the fact growing up kids have different coaches."
Boston Bruins, Director of Amateur Scouting
"Character. People have similar abilities in life, and people who are driven or who have the will to succeed are the people who achieve things in life. When you're looking at a hockey player, you look at the overall way he approaches the game, whether he's a team player, whether he's prepared to take a hit to make a play, what he's prepared to sacrifice to win."
Minnesota Wild, Assistant GM
"Desire - to prepare, to work hard in the off season to get better to get to the next level."
Dallas Stars, Head coach
"Mostly it takes talent. Look for a skill set, then look for intangibles: character, drive, determination, wiliness to dig in when it gets tough, how they play in the big games. [Must have] Work ethic."
"Commitment to make sacrifices. A lot of people are unaware of the sacrifices these top-tier players make. Also, insatiable appetite. … And good teammates - they make other players better."