Virtual Coaching Clinic: Day 4 recap

Skill development remains a foundational piece to Brad Berry's program and he weaves it into all of his practices.

Former NBA super coach Phil Jackson said it best: “The strength of the team is each individual member and the strength of each member is the team.” Keep that in mind as we discuss Thursday’s speakers at the College Hockey Inc. Virtual Coaches Clinic, presented by InStat.

All three presentations touched on the importance of the individual, which is sometimes overshadowed with hockey being such a team sport. Brad Berry kicked off the day speaking to the importance of individual skill development, then TJ Manastersky discussed how to identify and recruit top level talent. Laura Bellamy ended the day helping goaltenders improve their puck play, to improve their team’s breakout.

“There’s no I in team, but there is in win,” to quote one of Jackson’s former players, namely Michael Jordan. Hockey is a team game, but Thursday was a reminder of individual importance.

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Here’s a rundown of Day 4.


Over the past six winning seasons, Brad Berry has guided the University of North Dakota to a 138-63-24 record, with three NCAA Tournament appearances and a national championship in 2016. Berry was awarded the Spencer Penrose Award as Division I Men’s Coach of the Year in 2020 and has clearly mastered the art of bringing a team together. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t make time for skill development, however. As he explained in his presentation, skill development remains a foundational piece to his program and he weaves it into all of his practices.


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TJ Manastersky begins his first season as an assistant coach with the Union College men’s hockey team in 2021-22, following nine years as the head men’s hockey coach at Division III Curry College. He knows a thing or two about recruiting and talent acquisition and how it must be part of every coach’s overall strategy. Manastersky provided a process for identifying and recruiting top level talent during his talk. As a bonus, he also did some game play breakdown, as you’ll see below.


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Laura Bellamy finished her sixth season at University of Minnesota-Duluth in 2020-21, and second as an associate head coach after four seasons as an assistant. In six seasons at UMD, Bellamy has help guide UMD to an overall record of 100-79-20, including a WCHA postseason record of 10-8 and two NCAA Tournament berths. But coaching isn’t her only talent. Bellamy was a standout goaltender at Harvard, who in her senior year was first-team All-Ivy, as well as the nation’s leader in GAA (0.92), while finishing second in the US in save percentage (.949). In her presentation, Bellamy provided valuable insights into how your goaltender can enhance your breakout – and she spoke from experience.


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Virtual Coaching Clinic schedule of events

Here’s what you can look forward to this week.

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Derek Jory

Derek Jory is the Director of Content at The Coaches Site. He previously spent 14 seasons with the Vancouver Canucks as their head writer and social media expert.

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