WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Cameron Hughes

What makes you the most dedicated or biggest fan of something? Is it the memorabilia and the moments you can say you attended? Perhaps it’s the level of emotion you show after a win or loss? In reality, while they may qualify you as a fan, to be the person that others see as “the biggest fan” you have to have just one thing – passion. Our guest today took his passion to a level that had never been seen before…

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Our guest today, Cameron Hughes, is a professional crowd igniter and public speaker. In case you haven’t heard of Cameron, when we say professional we mean it – he has inspired crowds at the US Open, NBA, NHL, TV and radio programs, corporate events, and the Olympics. In addition to his work in person, Cameron is also the author of, “King of Cheer: Stories of showing up, getting up, and never giving up from the world’s most electrifying crowd ignitor.”

Cameron’s purpose in life is simple and inspiring, to energize others to just get up and live every experience to its fullest.

WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Dan Blackburn


Mental fitness has become a major point of discussion in sports from the youth level to the pro levels. Like most “new” topics of conversation, there are a lot of opinions in addition to a lot of misinformation. However you slice it, it’s clear that there is a stigma surrounding mental health. We are going to break some of those stigmas down today.

Dan Blackburn has spent 25 years coaching and inspiring youth, business executives, world champions, and Stanley Cup-winning athletes the habits, rituals, and skills needed to build mental resilience in order to find success.

Dan is the author of “When the Puck Drops: 17 Stories that will Shock you, Rock you and Inspire you.”, an award-winning TEDx speaker, finalist for the Willie O’Ree Community Hero award, and has been featured across the lexicon of sports programming.

WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Adam Power

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As athletes, we dedicate ourselves to being the absolute best we can be at our craft. No matter the field of play, for most, the journey eventually focuses on one sport. Adam Power was on the hot route to professional hockey before his dream was derailed by injury. Instead of turning to coaching or other work within the game, he decided to pursue one of the hardest things to do in athletics, become a pro at a different sport – and he did just that.

Adam “AJ” Power, is a former hockey player turned professional golfer who currently plays on the mini-tours in Las Vegas, Phoenix, and California. AJ has been in the top 15 of finishers on several events and is grinding away to achieve his first win. With a long game that is well known by coaches and competitors – we don’t think he’s far off.

AJ grew up playing hockey and his talents took him from the amateur AAA level to the WHL, cutting his teeth with the legendary Spokane Chiefs as a 16-year-old. Known as a highly talented puck-moving defenseman, His speed, toughness, heavy shot, and 6’5, 200lb frame excited coaches and scouts alike. AJ was on the path towards the NHL draft before, unfortunately, injuries and concussions forced him to retire.

While he may have been finished with hockey, he was not finished with sports. Shortly after retiring, AJ made the bold decision to dive headfirst into golf and began training with legendary Coach Greg LaBelle at the famed Butch Harmon School of Golf. The rest, as they say, is history.

AJ is married to his beautiful wife Danielle, they have a Chocolate Lab named Ruby, and they recently welcomed their first child, son Oliver Power.

WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Sam Ball

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As athletes and coaches, we can often get lost focusing on our own path, our own goals, and our own struggles. In reality, no matter what your personality, past or purpose, none of us can succeed on our own. Our guest this week, Sam Ball, will serve as both an anchor and example of someone who lived at both sides of the success spectrum while crafting himself into the tremendous servant leader he is today.

After many years of struggling with addiction and trying to get sober with little Success, Sam Ball realized in order to stay sober and grow he had to build a community and look at the whole picture of physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional health. And that’s just what he did.

Sam currently coaches at Warrior Strength, a non-profit gym built around support and community. He is a Strongfirst Certified Kettlebell and Barbell instructor as well as a certified Peer Support Specialist. He is also a nutrition coach though he prefers to use his knowledge to help his peers rather than take on clients.

Sam is also the Program Manager and Recovery coach at Flourish Bakery, a non-profit that helps people coming out of treatment or incarceration to rebuild their lives by teaching them to bake, introducing them to resources, teaching them life skills such as finance and nutrition, but most importantly helping them to build a community.

In addition to everything we said above, Sam is also a traditional archer, scuba diver, chef, dog lover, and powerlifter.

Sam is a man of integrity and compassion. He holds space for people to be exactly where they are at and will love and support them through the process.

You can find Sam’s work at and

Show Notes

Sam walks us through his journey – 2:16

Sam shares the moment that changed his life – 4:39

Sam defines mental fitness – 9:11

Sam discusses his decision to go into servant leadership – 12:42

Sam shares his internal breakthrough and what it felt like – 14:28

Sam talks about fitness and body building and its importance to him – 16:40

Sam discusses the need for community – 23:02

Sam talks about gaining the trust of those he works with – 29:51

Sam shares advice for someone who is struggling – 31:59

Sam reflects on his journey – 33:17

WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Andy Neary

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As athletes and coaches, roadblocks and hurdles in our journey are expected. However, those that garner the skill sets, mindset and mentors that teach us to get through those times is what ultimately makes us winners. Our guest this week, Andy Neary, helps to create winners.

Andy is a former professional baseball player, two-time Ironman finisher, business coach, and founder of the complete game coaching program.

As we dive into Andy’s life today, you will find that no matter the arena, he was able to draw on his experience as an athlete to break through adversity to succeed.

In addition to being an achiever, Andy is also the host of the Bulldog sessions, a podcast dedicated to helping athletes and business professionals make the successful transition to the next chapter of their life. He is also a contributing author on the Amazon bestseller, Breaking Through the Status Quo.”

Show Notes

– Andy talks about being an undersized athlete and making it in professional baseball: 2:13

– Andy dives into what it means to do the work in the dark place: 7:15

– Andy shares how he dials in to compete in the Ironman Competitions: 12:13

– Andy walks us through the moment of exhaustion in competition and the breakthrough: 14:47

– Andy discusses the “Leaders Eat Last” mentality: 19:47

– Andy shares the influential people in his life: 26:07

– Andy talks about transferring his sports experience into his business: 30:32

– Andy shares advice for younger athletes: 33:59

WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Coach Boris Sapone

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Whats your why? Why do you get up in the morning? Why do you coach or play sports? Why do you go to school or work?

Our guest today, Coach Boris Sapone, will show you the power of having an answer to that question.

Show Notes

– Boris takes us through his journey to personal training and owning his business – 2:15

– Boris shares his vision in designing his business and how he strives to be different from the typical CrossFit box –  11:04

– Boris talks about getting younger athletes into fitness – 17:56

– Boris shares the best approach when talking to someone about making fitness more of a priority in their life –  20:59

– Boris discusses the mental fitness piece of physical fitness and how important it is in his business – 27:47

– Boris shares words of wisdom for young coaches – 34:40

– Boris discusses adversity and his tactics for overcoming adversity in his life –  36:42

– Boris shares his thoughts on maintaining a positive mindset – 45:00

– Boris gives his perspective on the opportunities available in American in contrast to other countries – 49:31

WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Susan Norton

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They say that you need mind, body, and spirit to move forward in life. But what happens when your body fails you? Can Mind and soul still pave the way? Our guest today, Susan Norton, will prove to you that they can while also providing one of the greatest examples of human perseverance we have ever seen.

WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Riley Cote

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We talk about the determination, mental fitness and GRIT needed to make it not just in pro sports but in life a lot on this show. Our guest today, Riley Cote, is a shining example of someone who did it in both arenas.

Riley was an undrafted player who walked-on to an NHL tryout which resulted in him taking the full road from the CHL to ECHL to AHL and eventually the NHL with the Philadelphia Flyers where he became a hometown favorite almost immediately. For those of you who don’t follow hockey – what Riley accomplished is extremely rare and we dive into what makes him tick as an athlete and as a person on this week’s episode of WIN.

Show Notes

-Riley shares what drove him to reach the levels he did in hockey: 1:19

-Riley discusses what traits he brought that helped his success: 4:47

-Riley talks about the people who made an impact during his career to help lead to success: 9:41

-Riley shares about his experiences coaching in the AHL and how he helped develop players: 15:38

-Riley shares his current work in mental wellness: 18:23

-Riley discusses and shares his passion for the future for use of hemp and cannabis as medicine in sport: 27:24

-Riley shares advice for young players and coaches as they journey to the next level: 37:30

-Riley talks about detaching from the outcome & present moment awareness: 39:48

WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Mike McKenna

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The life of a professional athlete can be hard. The life of a minor league athlete, one who moves up and down and around consistently, can be even harder. Our guest today, Mike McKenna played 550 games between the ECHL, AHL, and NHL with multiple teams. However, his demeanor and approach to life lead him to not only a full career, but one where he found massive enjoyment, camaraderie and knowledge – all which he shares with us on WIN.


He played four seasons for St. Lawrence University before being drafted by the Nashville Predators in the 2002 NHL Draft.


Today, Mike is the volunteer goalie coach for St. Lawrence University, his alma mater where he played four years for their division 1 team. He is also a coach with 44VisionHockey in addition to being the host of two podcasts, “The Suitcase and the Scribe with Scott Burnside and the 6 Degrees with Mike McKenna podcast, where he has interviewed some very high-profile NHL goaltenders and executives.

Show Notes

Mike shares how he got into goaltending: 2:08

Mike talks about his mental fitness routine: 5:11

Mike discusses the traits that made the best and worst teams he played with: 13:11

Mike talks about the leadership traits he learned during his career and wants young athletes to pay attention to: 23:39

Mike discusses team roles and being led: 32:30

Mike talks to being a superstar in the role asked of you: 41:17

Mike shares about the mental resilience he had during his journey between the AHL and NHL: 50:30

WIN: Championship Traits For Life - Frank Buonomo

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You hear it all the time, the journey is the gift. But what does that actually mean? This week’s guest, Frank Buonomo, worked in a power position in the NHL for over 20 years, and in this episode, he will share insight about his journey, who helped him along the way, and what commonalities he sees amongst top performers in sport and business.
Show Notes

Frank shares about his mentors and how they molded him and his career: 1:51

Frank discusses why its important to slow down and not burn out on your passions: 5:51

Frank discusses the importance of leaders taking time to take care of themselves physically and mentally: 8:51

Frank shares the importance of creating connections and understanding how to motivate people: 14:22

Frank talks about the importance of culture and how to achieve a great team culture: 18:50

Frank explains the importance of maintaining a team’s culture and bond: 28:01

Frank discusses roles and respecting each others’ roles on a team, as well as the issues behind comparing athletic competition to being in the military: 34:51

Frank talks about Sidney Crosby and some of the qualities that make him such a wonderful human being: 38:27

Frank shares what separates the top people he’s worked with from the rest: 42:42

Frank discusses advice for helping young people to break into sports: 47:18

Frank talks about the type of people Ryan Whitney and Paul Bissonnette are and how the growth to their person brands is a testament to each of their character: 58:52