Florida Everblades Head Coach Brad Ralph on the power of preparation

Aaron Wilbur

I’m a husband, father, sports nut, entrepreneur and grateful to call Vancouver home. I enjoy cooking, watching live music and hiking the North Shore mountains with my family. My son is a football player, which has turned me into a big football fan. It’s helped me appreciate what hockey parents go through, especially those who have little experience with the sport, when trying to navigate their child up the hockey ladder.

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His attention to detail has helped develop one of the top programs in the ECHL.

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In episode #171 of the Glass and Out Podcast, we’re joined by Brad Ralph, Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations for the Florida Everblades of the East Coast Hockey League.

Ralph is currently in his sixth season with the Everblades, quietly helping them develop into one of the top programs in the ECHL.

During his tenure, Florida has captured four South Division titles and advanced to two conference championships. In the 2017-2018 season, he helped the club set a record for most wins (53) and points (112) in a season. The Blades also advanced to the Kelly Cup final and he was awarded the Jack Brophy Award as ECHL Coach of the Year. His 45 career wins in the Kelly Cup playoffs currently ranks him fifth all time in the ECHL.

Ralph got his coaching career start at just 30-years-old in Augusta, Georgia, with the Augusta RiverHawks of the Southern Professional Leagues. After being handed the keys to an expansion franchise with no coaching experience on his resume, he led the team to the league final and was recognized as Coach of the Year.

After three season with the ECHL’s Idaho Steelheads, he made a brief stop in the Western Hockey League as Head Coach of the Kelowna Rockets, during which he led the team to a 48-20-4 record and an appearance in the Western Conference Championship.

Find out his strategies for managing the grind of an ECHL season, why preparation is key to developing relationships with his players, and why he believes every player has the potential to achieve their dream of playing the NHL.

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