Community size effects in Canadian National Hockey League draftees: exploring regional variations in community size effects and the influence of population density and proximity to Canadian hockey league teams.

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Researcher have identified certain population size categories to be more advantageous in developing elite athletes than others (Côté et al., 2006), giving this phenomenon the name “community size effect”. However, inter-categorical comparisons assume uniformity of athlete production within categories, which may be misleading. The purpose of Study 1 was to explore the homogeneity in Canadian National Hockey League (NHL) draftee production within population size categories across provincial regions of Canada. Results showed substantial intra-categorical variability in NHL draftee production, suggesting athlete development environments are not equal between similarly sized cities. The purpose of Study 2 was to explore the effects of population density and distance to Canadian Hockey League (CHL) teams on developing Canadian NHL draftees. Results showed a significant positive relationship between population density and draftee production in all provincial regions, and a significant negative relationship between distance to CHL teams and draftee production in 4/6 provincial regions.
Community size effect, Athlete development, Sport expertise