Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Follow-ups: coaching, rink, and Finns

1. I think we'll be hearing imminently who the Thrashers assistant coaches will be this year. It seems more and more likely to me that Chicago Wolves assistant coach Todd Nelson will be joining John Anderson in Atlanta. I first mentioned it here during prospect camp.

The Wolves will likely make their own coaching announcement as soon as the Thrashers do. Right now it would be awkward to do it because Nelson would be a candidate for the head coach position there if he stayed. Best to avoid that. (Though I wonder if any media in Chicago would even notice...there's been not one item on the search that I could find. Everything's been out of Atlanta/Gwinnett.)

Some don't think the identity of the assistant coaches are very important. In normal times, that's probably true. But these aren't normal times. When there's any kind of power struggle or uncertainty going on, it gives you a window in like nothing else does. Would top candidates stay away due to the uncertainty of ownership, like the head coaching job?

2. In other news, Finnish hockey fans are hard-core. I learned this today after mentioning something about Finland yesterday and getting about 1000 visits from that country in the past 24 hours (numbers not exaggerated). That's like what, 10% of the country? (I kid!) Seriously, though, stay cold, Finland.

3. Things you like to see: Robbie Bina turning pro.

In about three years, Robbie Bina has made the incredible journey from a broken neck to a professional hockey contract.

4. Things you don't like to see: Unfinished, abandoned hockey arenas. This is the Sarasota one.

The arena is now little more than three concrete walls standing along the largely unused road named Center Ice Parkway. It is fenced off twice -- once with a gate for which Diaz has the key and with another fence maintained by SMR.

The project's future remains uncertain, but it still has its supporters.

The East Coast Hockey League (sic), which had a team lined up to come here if the arena was built, still considers Lakewood Ranch a prime market.

5. I found another article talking about the rink project in Peachtree City. It references a letter from Don Waddell to the organizer of the project.

During his presentation Thursday, Thompson included a letter from Don Waddell, Executive Vice President and GM of the Atlanta Thrashers.

“The Thrashers would like to be involved in this, and will do mini-camps and hold some practices here,” said Thompson.

He also presented a letter of support from Toby Jeffreys, Majority Owner and Chairman of the Gwinnett Gladiators.


nealimus said...

I wonder about the letter of support from Toby Jeffrey's of the Gladiators for the new rink in Ptree city. Is his support for the general benefit of more local ice to generate interest in hockey or a dissatisfation with the Duluth facility or maybe providing some relief to the Ice Forum during hockey season from Glads,Thrashers,high school hockey and the various levels of youth leagues,ect.

Holly Gunning said...

My bet would be the first choice. More hockey is good for everyone.

There is a shortage of ice in the city, so this would help youth programs expand.