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My Story

Updated: Sep 27, 2022

Hi Goalies,

Here's my hockey story. Starts in a state with no hockey. =) I was born in Honolulu Hawaii, raised in Chanhassen, Minnesota from divorced military parents, I'm a 1st generation hockey player. I was always a loner. So, as you can imangine, Goaltending was naturally, my position. I became a goalie because the associations provided goalie equipment that our family couldn't otherwise afford. My goaltending idol was the Legendary Soviet Goaltender, Vladislav Tretiak. He was and in many respects, still is, my role model as it comes to work ethic. I was 12 and at hockey camp. Tretiak was in front of me for the 1st time, watching me work the main drill. I was so excited. I performed well. Then I went to the side drill and half ass'ed it. I didn't think he was watching...


I turn around, and he is standing directly in front of me. Vladislav Tretiak.

I'll never forget it. He looks at me sadly and says. "Why you no never work hard? "

He gestures over to the main drill in broken English. "Here, You work hard. Then he gestures over to the side drill. "Here, You no never work hard. You must work hard every time!" "You must always work hard. Every drill." I'll never forget it. It changed my life. It gave me inspiration to work like him. To never give up on shots and to work daily to achieve my dream. It was the fire I needed to quit making excuses for myself and commit to my dreams of becoming an elite goaltender. I wasn't one of the gifted goalies who always got selected for the top teams, and all star teams. No. As Drake would say. "I started from the bottom."


For me, A 1st generation hockey player, I went from a C player;

to a B player

to a A player

back to a B player

back to a A player (this happened squirt -bantam)

to a JV player

to a Varsity player

to a Varsity Captain player

to a USHL player

to a USHL player winning the (Ron Woody Award Winner-Hardest working)

to a Collegiate player

to a Collegiate Captain as a goalie

to a Collegiate league Player of the Year

to a NCAA All-American

to runner-up NCAA National Player of the Year

to a pro player

all the way to my University's Hall of Fame.


It's been a ride of ups and downs. One thing is constant. For every down, there are 2 ups. Goalies, remember that.. Never quit believing in yourself. Even if you get pulled. If you have a bad game. If you have a bad practice. Because for every down , there are 2 ups. Keep putting in the work and you will attain your dreams. Work hard and follow your dreams.

Control your moment and work hard each and every practice.

The Virtual Goalie Coach

Jeff Dotson

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