Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Hockey Canada to the NHL

Hockey Canada has long been a training ground for the NHL when it comes to support and coaching staffs. Some bench bosses hone their skills with the organization, while others (Pat Quinn) rejuvenate their careers. It's also been a jumping off point for those in the video world. A number of editing geniuses are now employed by NHL teams, and not just as guys who cut and paste with precision the good and bad from games. Here are some examples of past Hockey Canada video men who have gone onto NHL gigs:

Ray Bennett-After his time with Hockey Canada, Bennett joined the LA Kings with Andy Murray at the helm. Murray was once the head coach of our National program. Bennett is now an assistant coach with the St. Louis Blues, where Andy Murray is the head coach.

Rob Cookson-After cutting up Canadian clips Cookson took a similar job with the Philadelphia Flyers. In 2005 he was the video master for Brent Sutter's Gold Medal winning WJC team, and now he's part of Sutter's staff with the Calgary Flames.

Ryan Jankowski-No man is an Island, but after his stint with the Maple Leafers, Jankowski is now an Islander. In fact he's the Assistant G.M. Jankowski was a scout with the Islanders before his post.

Which brings me to why I'm writing this. The Oilers have yet to replace Brian Ross as their video coach. Monday they dipped into Hockey Canada for their goaltending coach, and I have a hunch they might do the same for their last vacant position on the staff. Ben Cooper is the current frame by frame man in the Calgary HC office. He was the Video guru for Canada's U-18 and World Junior teams, coached by.....you guessed it Pat Quinn. It seems like a logical move for Quinn to bring in a guy he's familiar with and who he's had success with. In the world of technology we live in, a good video coach can be pretty important to a bench boss.

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