Update: Aaron & I recorded a quick podcast to tee up the conference. Listen here!
I’m sitting in the backyard of an AirBNB in Naples, Florida waiting for the start of the American Hockey Coaches Association’s annual convention in Naples, Florida. Our podcast gear is set up, my talented colleague Jay Aikenhead is tapping away while boss-man Aaron Wilbur tries to score us tickets to the first game of the eastern conference semi-final featuring the Tampa Bay Lightning and an as-yet undecided opponent.
I’m surrounded by intelligent people who are passionate about hockey and the things coaches can do to make it a valuable experience for players, their parents, and themselves, if they stick with it long enough.
It’s a beautiful spot to be, here in Florida. I’m excited to hear the Aaron’s live interview with Jack Capuano, assistant coach with the Florida Panthers. Paul Vincent, skills coach with the Florida Panthers, is going to give a presentation on playing fast in games, practices, and in the breakfast room in the player’s lounge. And the talk I’m looking forward to the most, Jay Woodcroft, one of the architects of the fastest team ever built, Team North America at last year’s World Cup of Hockey.
Last year we had Bill Peters give a talk on our behalf. Yes, the Bill Peters who recently escaped the strange-but-not-strange situation with the Carolina Hurricanes to accept a dream job as head coach with the Calgary Flames. And wouldn’t you know it, Bill Peters had a great quote just this morning about climbing the coaching ranks.
“Get involved locally and provincially. Get your NCCP certifications. Work with a mentor coach. That’s sound advice for all coaches.”
Quote courtesy of @CAC_ACE on twitter
I’ve been guilty of rushing my career in the past. Coaching, working, school, It doesn’t matter what walk of life you’re navigating, we neglect the present if we constantly have our eyes on the future. I already miss the hockey season, but I love the summer. I love the opportunity to learn from people in the business, whether it’s my co-workers here on the deck in Naples or from professional, college, and amateur coaches on the other side of the continent.