If you had a son who was an NHL prospect, would you prefer to see him play:Understandably, all the pro-NCAA people have been all OMG NCAA over this news. I don't think it is that groundbreaking though. I'm not surprised the majority chose college hockey. If you look at parents in general, they almost always want their kid to go the college route. But in the end, it is the kid that makes the decision, and all kids hear is how great the CHL is, and how it is the best route, so that is the route they usually end up taking.
1) U.S. college hockey (140) 52%
2) Major junior hockey (104) 39%
3) European hockey (26) 10%
4) Other (0)
Sam Gagner is a perfect example. His dad, Dave, played in the NHL, and had this question been asked to him while he was in the NHL, he probably would have chosen college. But when push came to shove, Sam ended up in the OHL.
That said, there are also plenty of stories of former NHL players that came out of the Canadian major junior ranks whose sons went on to play in college hockey. Just off former Michigan teams, the names Travis Turnbull, Eric Nystrom, Ryan Sittler, and Bobby Gassoff come to mind. The sons of Rob Ramage and Uwe Krupp both tried out for the NTDP and will presumably be headed to college some day.
So like I said, this isn't anything particularly ground-breaking. I suppose that it is good news for college hockey, but I don't see it as a major change in thinking among people in the hockey world.