NHL head coaching diversity down to zero as Flyers fire Craig Berube

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And then there were none.

The number of minority head coaches in the National Hockey League zeroed out Friday when the Philadelphia Flyers did the expected and fired Craig Berube after the team failed to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Ted Nolan, left, and  Craig Berube, were the NHL's only minority head coaches. Both have been fired.(Photo/Philadelphia Flyers).

Ted Nolan, left, and Craig Berube, were the NHL’s only minority head coaches. Both have been fired.(Photo/Philadelphia Flyers).

Berube, who is part Cree, joins former Buffalo Sabres Head Coach Ted Nolan, who’s Ojibwe, on the unemployment line. The two made history in November 2013 when they became the first two First Nations members to coach against each other in an NHL game.

“Do I think he did a good job last year? Yes,” Flyers General Manager Ron Hextall said of Berube. “And this year things didn’t go so well. So you take the whole piece of the pie. I don’t think you can evaluate a coach on 20 or 40 games; you have to evaluate him on the whole ball of wax. We felt over two seasons that a change was needed.”

The Flyers tapped Berube, 49, to replace Head Coach Peter Laviolette in October 2013.  About a month later, Buffalo brought Nolan back for a second stint behind the Sabres bench.

Now the two have received their walking papers nearly a week apart. Neither firing was unexpected. Flyers management felt it had a playoff-caliber roster. But the team finished sixth in the NHL’s Metropolitan Division with a 33-31-18 record that wasn’t Stanley Cup Playoffs-worthy.

Philadelphia Flyers let Head Coach Craig Berube go after two season behind the bench.

Philadelphia Flyers let Head Coach Craig Berube go after two season behind the bench.

The team was plagued by inconsistent play – world-beaters against top-tier NHL teams, doormats against lesser opponents – and some questionable coaching decisions. Berube mismanaged goaltender Steve Mason, arguably the Flyers’ best player in 2014-15. Berube appeared to rush Mason back between the pipes early after the goalie suffered injuries.

Nolan’s canning wasn’t a shocker but the rationale for it was. The Sabres, at 23-51-8, had the NHL’s worst record, a dubious distinction that now puts the team in the best position to land the first overall pick in June’s NHL Draft, which will likely be Erie Otters forward Connor McDavid.

After putting an underwhelming product on the ice, and after a season of fan and media talk about the Sabres tanking for the best shot at McDavid,  Buffalo General Manager Tim Murray said he let Nolan go because he thought the team was better than its record indicated.

“I didn’t foresee us being a 30th-place team,” Murray said at a news conference. “Certainly after the trade deadline, trading out guys I had a big part in that, there’s no question and I own that. But up to the trade deadline I was open to keeping guys, I was open to maybe discussing with guys that were coming due, but the place we  were in was the place we were in.”

Whatever the rationale, both Buffalo and Philadelphia are in the market for head coaches. Both teams may take runs at Detroit Red Wings Head Coach Mike Babcock, whose contract in the Motor City expires soon.

They like Mike. Several NHL teams are expected to bid for Red Wings Coach Mike Babcock's services. (Photo Courtesy of The Detroit News/David Guralnick).

They like Mike. Several NHL teams are expected to bid for Red Wings Coach Mike Babcock’s services. (Photo Courtesy of The Detroit News/David Guralnick).

However, Babcock will be in high demand – Detroit, Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins will surely be interested – and he’ll demand to be paid, at least $5 million per season.

The Flyers may take a look at former Pittsburgh Penguins and U.S. Olympic men’s hockey team coach Dan Bylsma; St. Louis Blues Head Coach Ken Hitchcock;  former Flyer player and Gold Medal-winning Canadian Olympic women’s hockey team coach Kevin Dineen; or even former Flyers Head Coach  John Stevens, currently a Los Angeles Kings assistant coach.

Washington’s Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club featured on PBS NewsHour

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Kudos to the PBS NewsHour for taking time in Thursday evening’s newscast to tell the story of the Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club, the nation’s oldest minority-oriented youth hockey program.

Since 1977, program founder Neal Henderson has shown that if you give a kid – no matter what race, ethnicity, or gender – a stick, a puck, some equipment, ice time, and a chance, they can become hockey players.

Henderson is a hockey lifer who teaches life through hockey. He uses the sport to instill teamwork, discipline, perseverance, responsibility and accountability in kids from some of D.C.’s toughest neighborhoods.  He’s a gentle man who preaches tough love, a task master who takes time to make sure his players are alright, both on and off the ice.

Hockey is lucky to have him. And PBS NewsHour was thoughtful enough to show viewers the essence of what he and the Fort Dupont program are all about.

Neal Henderson, far left, and his Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club  hang out with Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin (Photo/Patrick McDermott).

Neal Henderson, far left, and his Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club hang out with Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin (Photo/Patrick McDermott).

The Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club is part of the National Hockey League’s Hockey is for Everyone initiative which provides support and unique programming to non-profit youth organizations across North America that are committed to offering children of all backgrounds opportunities to play hockey.

Diversity among NHL head coaches declines after Buffalo Sabres fire Ted Nolan

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Diversity within the National Hockey League’s head coaching ranks dwindled Sunday evening when the Buffalo Sabres fired bench boss Ted Nolan.

Nolan, who was in his second stint with the Sabres, piloted to team to a dismal 23-51-8 record, the worst record in the league. But many Sabres fans embraced the team’s race to the bottom for a chance at drafting Erie Otters forward Connor McDavid,  who’s ranked as hockey’s top prospect by the NHL’s Central Scouting bureau.

Ted Nolan won't be back behind the Sabres bench in 2015-16. The team fired him on Sunday. (Bill Wippert, Buffalo Sabres)

Ted Nolan won’t be back behind the Sabres bench in 2015-16. The team fired him on Sunday. (Bill Wippert, Buffalo Sabres)

The league will hold a ping-pong ball lottery Saturday to determine which of the 14 NHL teams that failed to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs gets the first pick. The Sabres have a 20 percent of winning it.

Sabres General Manager Tim Murray told reporters Sunday that he felt the team had a better roster than its record indicated.

“I didn’t foresee us being a 30th-place team,” Murray said at a news conference. “Certainly after the trade deadline, trading out guys I had a big part in that, there’s no question and I own that. But up to the trade deadline I was open to keeping guys, I was open to maybe discussing with guys that were coming due, but the place we  were in was the place we were in.”

Murray added: “I don’t know if I was disappointed (in Nolan). We decided to go with young guys in a rebuild and surround them with some high-character veterans and we’ve done that. We still finished in 30th-place. There’s been a lot of changes here and that’s on me. I’m not going to question his coaching decisions here in front of you guys. It’s a decision that was made and there’s a big picture to it.”

Nolan, who’s Ojibwe, had a 40-87-17 record with the Sabres since he took over Buffalo’s coaching duties in November 2013. The team’s poor showing over the last few seasons prompted it to trade stars like goaltender Ryan Miller, high-scoring forward Thomas Vanek, and unload bad free agent contracts like forward Ville Leino‘s.

Asked  by the Associated Press about his dismissal, Nolan said “I’m just going to reflect on it and come out with a statement in the next couple of days.”

Evander Kane will have a new coach and new teammates next season in Buffalo.

Evander Kane will have a new coach and new teammates next season in Buffalo.

Buffalo is looking to use the 2015 draft to reload – both on-ice and behind the bench. The drive for 2015-16 began in February when the Sabres acquired forward Evander Kane from the Winnipeg Jets in a seven-player trade.

Kane suffered a shoulder injury before the trade and didn’t play a single game for the Sabres. He knows he was brought in to add firepower to a team on the cusp of getting McDavid or Boston University forward Jack Eichel.

“There’s a lot of excitement for the future in Buffalo,” Kane told NHL.com in February. “Just looking at next year, they’re going to get a top pick and that’s exciting. Just to have one of those guys maybe to play with next year, plus the other young players on that team.”

There’s speculation that if the Sabres do land McDavid they’ll take a serious, and expensive, run at Detroit Red Wings Head Coach Mike Babcock, who’s in the final year of his contract in the Motor City.

Babcock, who guided Detroit to the Stanley Cup in 2008, could command several million dollars per season as teams like the deep-pocketed Toronto  Maple  Leafs, which fired Coach Peter Horachek and General Manager Dave Nonis Sunday, aggressively vie for his services.

Nolan’s firing leaves only one minority head coach in the NHL – Philadelphia Flyers’ Craig Berube, who’s part Cree. But Berube might also be on his way out the door soon because the team – 33-31-18 – failed to make the playoffs.  The Flyers only have a 6.5 percent chance of winning the McDavid/Eichel lottery Saturday.

Kia Nurse joins big brother Darnell with a championship victory

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Another championship game, another championship for the Nurse family.

Defenseman Darnell Nurse, the Edmonton Oilers’ 2013 first-round draft pick, powered Team Canada to a 5-4 victory over Russia to win the Gold Medal at the International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship in January.

UConn guard Kia Nurse adds to the family championship trophy case.

UConn guard Kia Nurse adds to the family championship trophy case.

Wednesday night, guard Kia Nurse, Darnell’s younger sister, scored nine points to help the University of Connecticut Huskies capture their third consecutive NCAA Division I women’s basketball championship, the school’s 10th overall. The Huskies defeated Notre Dame 63-53 in Tampa, Fla.

“It’s the pinnacle of women’s basketball,” proud papa Richard Nurse told the hometown Hamilton Spectator before the game. “Outside of the Olympics there isn’t a bigger stage for women’s basketball than the NCAA championship.”

The Nurses are a close-knit, athletic family

Team Canada's Darnell Nurse.

Team Canada’s Darnell Nurse.

-and highly competitive. Father Richard Nurse was a wide receiver for the Canadian Football League’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats; his wife, Cathy, was a stellar basketball player for Canada’s McMaster University.

Their older daughter, Tamika, played basketball at the University of Oregon and Bowling Green State University. Richard Nurse’s brother, Roger, was a standout lacrosse player in Canada. Their sister, Raquel, was a Syracuse University hoops standout and is married to former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb.

Kia and Darnell’s cousin, Sarah Nurse, plays hockey for the University of

Wisconsin. Her younger brother, Elijah Nurse, was drafted by the Ontario Hockey League’s Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, the Canadian major junior team Darnell plays for.

Kia Nurse gravitated to the hardwood rather than the hard ice. Still, her father says that she has a hockey player’s mentality on the court.

“Besides being extremely skilled, she’s a nasty piece of business,” he once told me. “She’s very physical.”

Big brother Darnell wasn’t able to attend Kia’s game on Tuesday night. His Greyhounds were preparing to play the Guelph Storm in the second round of the Ontario Hockey League playoffs.

But most of the family – including McNabb – was in Tampa to cheer and celebrate. And the Nurses becoming a two-sport, two-championship household wasn’t lost on the hockey world.

Darnell Nurse team Canada photo by Matthew Murnaghan/Hockey Canada Images.

St. Louis Blues’ Ryan Reaves has a present for the tooth fairy

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St. Louis Blues Headshots

Who needs dental school? Apparently not St. Louis Blues right wing Ryan Reaves.

After taking a bone-rattling check Sunday in the Blues’ 2-1 win over the Chicago Blackhawks, the rugged forward returned to the St. Louis bench and performed oral surgery – calmly yanking a loose tooth bare-handed. No Novocaine, no pliers, no missed shift, no problem.

But did he put it under his pillow after the game?

To better understand what makes Reaves tick, give this great ESPN.com story a read.

When Greatness Collides – Subban vs. Ovechkin Round Two

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A couple of things about pro hockey players: They never forget and they seldom forgive. They may not get mad immediately, but they almost always get even – no matter how long it takes.

Such appeared to be the case in Montreal last Thursday when Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban lined up Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin with a solid check that sent him airborne.

Ovechkin wasn’t hurt by the collision. As the Great 8 used to say, “Russian machine never breaks.”

The highlight-reel hit was payback by P.K. On Feb. 1, 2011, Ovechkin posterized Subban, sending sent him skyward with an open-ice hip check that many considered the hit of the season.

From rink to campus: 3 Hockey is For Everyone players win college scholarships

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Wyatt Christiansen, an NHL/TMCF recipient.

Wyatt Christiansen, an NHL/TMCF recipient.

Congratulations to Wyatt Christiansen, Cassidy Guthrie, and Austin Verissimo, the 2015 NHL/Thurgood Marshall College Fund academic scholarship recipients.

The three winners, each hockey players who participated in one of the National Hockey League-affiliated Hockey is for Everyone programs, were announced  last week at an event at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C.

Christiansen is a defenseman from Calgary’s Hockey Education Reaching Out Society (HEROS) program. He intends to major in business at Mount Royal University in Calgary.

Guthrie, a hockey player for 11 years, hails from Ohio’s Columbus Ice Hockey Club.

Cassidy Guthrie.

Cassidy Guthrie.

She’s currently a sophomore at Miami University, where she’s a member of the school’s women’s club hockey team. Her scholarship will cover her remaining two years at the university.

Verissimo has played hockey for three years and is a member of New Jersey’s Hockey in Newark program. He’s interested in studying finance and has set his sights on attending Cornell University in New York.

“At the National Hockey League, it is our priority to do whatever we can to encourage young hockey players to pursue their education as eagerly as they pursue the puck,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said at the announcement event attended by Washington Capitals Owner Ted Leonsis, Thurgood Marshall College Fund President & CEO Johnny Taylor, USA Hockey Senior Communications Director Dave Fischer, and the Stanley Cup. “We want to connect the skills of skating and passing with the disciplines of study and passion for learning, to link the joys of scoring goals on ice with the importance of setting goals off the ice, and one of the ways we pursue those objectives is through our support of the NHL/Thurgood Marshall Scholarship.”

Austin Verissimo.
Austin Verissimo.

The NHL and TMCF have partnered to award scholarships to academically-eligible Hockey is for Everyone players since 2012. Hockey is For Everyone programs are nonprofit organizations across North America.

The programs provide youth of all backgrounds the chance to play hockey at little or no cost and serve as a means to encourage them to stay in school. In addition, participants learn essential life skills through the core values of hockey: commitment, perseverance, and teamwork.

Money for the scholarships is generated in part from an annual charity hockey game played between a team with members of Congress and a squad of Washington lobbyists.

The lawmakers defeated the lobbyists 3-2 in the game played last week at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex, the Capitals’ practice facility. Rep. John Katko, a Republican from New York, scored the winning goal with an assist from former Washington Capitals great Peter Bondra.

The event raised more than $100,000 and gave the lawmakers team – which included Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-Pa.), Eric Paulsen (R-Minn.) and Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) – bragging rights for another year.

“It couldn’t have been any more fun,” Katko told Syracuse.com. “It was a great charity event. We skated with wounded warriors. One of my great, great heroes is Peter Bondra. I told him before the game, I said ‘Peter, you’re from Slovakia, my father’s from Slovakia (with) his family, you’ve got to get me a goal.’ And he got me the game-winner. It was great.”

 

Alex Ovechkin skates with D.C.’s Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club

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What do players from the Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club do when their Washington, D.C., rink is closed for annual maintenance? They go to Ovie’s house.

Alex Ovechkin shows Fort Dupont player how NHL defenders feel (Photo/Patrick McDermott).

Alex Ovechkin shows Fort Dupont player how NHL defenders feel (Photo/Patrick McDermott).

Thirty-five kids from the nation’s oldest minority-oriented youth hockey program hit the ice with Washington Capitals All-Star left wing Alex Ovechkin at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Virginia Monday for a clinic.

“Can you imagine having the greatest hockey player…come up and play with you?” Neal Henderson, Fort Dupont’s director and founder told USA Today. “Can you imagine what that is. To be able to touch and talk to an idol like him…is unforgettable.”

Thirty-five players from the Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club hang with Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin (Photo/Patrick McDermott)

Thirty-five players from the Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club hang with Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin (Photo/Patrick McDermott)

The clinic was sponsored by Beats by Dr. Dre, a product that Ovechkin endorses. Former Capitals players Alan May and Brent Johnson joined Ovechkin on the Kettler ice.

Ovie perhaps waiting for a pass from Caps center Nicklas Backstrom? Watch out, goalie!(Photo/Patrick McDermott).

Ovie perhaps waiting for a pass from Caps center Nicklas Backstrom? Watch out, goalie!(Photo/Patrick McDermott).

“It’s great for the kids, and for me to spend time with the kids,” Ovechkin told USA Today. “Of course (my mind) is not 100 percent off the game or the playoffs, but to do something like that, it’s always nice, it’s always good for everybody.”

 

 

 

OHL’s Taylor Davis works to join cast of Jersey Boys in National Hockey League

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A bridge that connects Pennsylvania and New Jersey has the slogan “Trenton Makes The World Takes” in huge neon-lit letters posted across its span- a tribute to the Garden State capital’s manufacturing and industrial heritage.

Taylor Davis wants to be Trenton’s next big export, and he’s working far from the shadows of the Lower Trenton Toll Supported Bridge that carries his hometown’s motto in hopes of making his hockey dreams come true.

Hockey has taken Davis from N.J. capital to Canada's (Photo/Valerie Wutti/Blitzenphotography.com)

Hockey has taken Davis from N.J. capital to Canada’s (Photo/Valerie Wutti/Blitzenphotography.com)

Davis first put on a pair of skates at Mercer County’s Ice Land when he was three years old after he watched a hockey game on television and told his mother “Mommy, I want to do that.”

Today, Davis is a 19-year-old defenseman for the Ontario Hockey League’s Ottawa 67’s, and he’s on a mission to join fellow Jersey Boys like Calgary Flames left wing Johnny Gaudreau and Toronto Maple Leafs left wing James van Riemsdyk in the National Hockey League.

“That’s the goal,” Davis said.

Gaudreau was a fourth-round draft pick in 2011. Van Riemsdyk was the second overall pick in the 2007 draft, taken behind Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane.

While “Johnny Hockey” and JVR burst onto the hockey scene as heralded draft picks, Davis has had to barge his way into the consciousness of the hockey world.

Taylor Davis went from walk-on to defensive standout for the OHL's Ottawa 67's (Photo/Valerie Wutti/Blitzenphotography.com).

Taylor Davis went from walk-on to defensive standout for the OHL’s Ottawa 67’s (Photo/Valerie Wutti/Blitzenphotography.com).

He wasn’t drafted by any Canadian major junior hockey team despite helping Western New York’s Kenmore East High School win the New York State Division II (Small School) championship in 2012 and despite having a solid 2011-12 season with the Buffalo Blades, a Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League team that counts Patrick Kane and former NHLer Todd Marchant among its alums.

Davis joined 67’s basically as a walk-on after being recommended to team officials

Scout Truman Dumel recommended Davis to 67"s.

Scout Truman Dumel recommended Davis to 67″s.

by Truman Dumel, a bird-dog scout who never actually saw Davis play but knew of his hockey pedigree and commitment to the game.

“I kept in touch with their head scout, who was Joe Rowley at the time, and he asks me if I know of any guys,” Dumel recalled. “I go to him, ‘Yeah, I know this kid from New Jersey.'”

Dumel’s recommendation earned Davis an invite to Ottawa’s rookie camp. His performance there garnered an invitation to the 67’s main camp and a roster spot on the team in 2012-13.

He’s been a mainstay on the blue line ever since, though he admits it was a challenge in the beginning of his OHL career.

“I had ups and downs in my first year, going against guys in practice like (Sean)Monahan, who’s in the NHL with the Calgary Flames now,” Davis told me recently. “It was a total shock coming from where you were the man and now you’re a fish in the big sea. It was pretty tough, but it’s been a nice adjustment for me.”

Taylor Davis has skated his way from New Jersey's capital to Canada's capital (Photo/Valerie Wutti/Blitzenphotography.com).

Taylor Davis has skated his way from New Jersey’s capital to Canada’s capital (Photo/Valerie Wutti/Blitzenphotography.com).

Nice indeed. This season, the 5-foot-11, 216-pound Davis has 2 goals and 11 assists in 47 games for the 67’s. He’s turned around a rookie-year plus/minus of minus-10 to a plus-11 this season.

“He has all the talent,” Dumel said. “He’s determined. He knows he has to prove himself, which is what he’s doing. He’s been playing hockey since he was three. He’s trying to go as far as he can.”

Trying to get far in hockey has kept Davis far from home in the off-season. He spent last summer in Venice Beach, California, working out with fitness maven T.R. Goodman,  who’s trained Anaheim Ducks forward Emerson Etem and retired NHL stars Chris Chelios, Jeremy Roenick, and Alan May.

“He’s very good, definitely knows his stuff,” Davis said of Goodman. “When I was there, Emerson Etem was there. Mike Tyson was there in the mornings and you’d see Lou Ferrigno walking around Gold’s Gym all the time.”

When he wasn’t pumping iron, Davis would chat with actor Ray Liotta, another Jersey Boy and regular at Goodman’s gym.

“Ray Liotta was always in there,” Davis said. “I always talked to him – he’s a really funny guy.”

 

 

 

NHL trade deadline, O’Ree Skills Weekend, showcase hockey’s growth

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Notes and quotes about hockey folks.

Another sign of how far people of color have come in hockey: Four black players were traded by the close of the National Hockey League’s trade deadline Monday.

The Buffalo Sabres shipped forward Chris Stewart to the Minnesota Wild Monday for a 2017 second-round draft pick.

Forward Chris Stewart, one of four black players moved before NHL trade deadline.

Forward Chris Stewart, one of four black players moved before NHL trade deadline.

The New York Rangers sent forward Anthony Duclair, their 2013 3rd-round draft pick, to the Arizona Coyotes as part of a package that took coveted puck-moving defenseman Keith Yandle  to Broadway.

The trade potentially reunites Duclair, currently playing for the Quebec Remparts of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, with Max Domi, a Coyotes 2013 first-round draft pick who plays for the Ontario Hockey League’s London Knights.

Duclair, Domi and Sam Reinhart, a Sabres 2014 first round draft pick, combined on a line for Team Canada that dominated the competition on Canada’s way to a Gold Medal at the 2015 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship. Don’t be surprised to see The Duke and Domi  as high-scoring pups who reinvigorate the Desert Dogs next season.

The Anaheim Ducks sent right wing Devante Smith-Pelly, a force in the Ducks’ Stanley Cup Playoffs appearance last season, to the Montreal Canadiens for left wing  Jiri Sekac.

The Winnipeg Jets shipped unhappy left wing Evander Kane to Buffalo in a multi-player mega-deal that landed the Jets defenseman Tyler Myers, right wing Drew

Stafford, and left wing Brendan Lemieux, a highly-touted prospect who plays for the OHL’s Barrie Colts.

What do these trades say about minorities in hockey? Growth. It wasn’t so long ago when there weren’t even four black players in the NHL. Today, there are nearly three dozen. Some of them are fixtures on their teams while others are call-ups from the minor leagues. The trades are a testament not only to the quantity of players of color in the league but to their quality and skill level as well.

Diversity on display in Flyers' locker room. Left to right: Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, Wayne Simmonds, Willie O'Ree and Ray Emery (Photo/Philadelphia Flyers).

Diversity on display in Flyers’ locker room. Left to right: Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, Wayne Simmonds, Willie O’Ree and Ray Emery (Photo/Philadelphia Flyers).

Congrats to the Philadelphia Flyers and the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation for hosting a fun and successful 2015 Willie O’Ree Skills Weekend last weekend. The event involved kids from the NHL’s “Hockey is for Everyone” programs.

O’Ree, the NHL’s first black player, is a role model for “Hockey is for Everyone” kids and for many of grownups playing on NHL teams.

“He’s my elder,” Flyers winger Wayne Simmonds told reporters. “I treat him with respect and let him know I have a lot of admiration for him. If it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be playing this game today. I know that.”

Team Ontario Assistant Coach Cyril Bollers, second row, right.

Team Ontario Assistant Coach Cyril Bollers, second row, right.

And finally, congrats to Cyril Bollers, coach and president of Skillz Hockey, for his work as assistant coach for Team Ontario’s Gold Medal-winning hockey team at the Canada Winter Games, which ended Sunday.

Ontario beat Team Alberta 3-1 Sunday in the championship game played in Prince George, B.C.  The Ontario squad finished the Under-16 tournament with a 6-0 record.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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