Local hockey product Marc Habscheid was the guest speaker of yesterday's Mayor's Luncheon in Swift Current... perhaps an opportunity to find out the latest in the never-ending speculation as to where he's going, or wants to go.
Here's the transcript of our post-lunch interview...
JK: It seems your name is always linked to every available coaching opportunity, is that flattering or a bit frustrating?
MH: It's flattering but at the same time it gets frustrating. Everyone thinks they know what I'm doing, but in reality I'm the only one who knows what I'm doing. There's a lot of things out there that are inaccurate but that's part of the public life I guess.
JK: So what do you want to do? What's next on the agenda?
MH: I want to get back in at the right time and situation. There's things out there that I want to own a team but that's not the case. I'm looking for the right situation. Whatever that is I'll go. Everything has to be right. I'm patient and want to make sure I'm going to the right spot. If that's strictly to be the Head Coach that's fine, as long as it's the right situation.
JK: There's a few open positions in the WHL... are you going to push to get back this year? I know you feel you've been out long enough.
MH: The day I was fired in Boston I wanted to get back in the same day. Family comes first but now they haven't moved for a couple of years and I think my kids are at an age where are I think they can move again. If the right situation comes along we'll go.
JK: It seems whenever a team is struggling the first reaction from some fans is "bring in Marc Habscheid to turn this around", what's your reaction to that?
MH: It's a compliment, I appreciate that. Family is my priority and hockey has to fit. My son was 15 and he moved 10 times...it was too much. Now they've been in the same spot for a couple years and are fine with moving again. So now it's just a matter of finding the right fit.
JK: What about a General Manager spot. Is that important?
MH: If I'm going into a situation where let's say the General Manager is rock solid, I don't want to be the General Manager, I'm happy being the head coach. All I want to do is be in a good place with my family and win. I want to enjoy what I'm doing. In Melfort (SJHL) I was a General Manager and I'm more of a hockey guy. In terms of managing hockey I like that.
JK: You've been out a few years and no doubt the game has changed. How confident are you that you could jump back in and be successful?
MH: You always feel confident in your ability but at the same time hockey is like golf - you can shoot a 79 one day and 85 the next so I'm humble enough to understand that you need to be in the right situation and have good people around you to be successful. I feel good with my ability and once I get back in whatever like or level it is I feel good about it.
JK: With the Regina Pats coaching opportunity it's already been said from Pats' General Manager that you aren't in consideration. Can you give me some details of that..
MH: I've known Brent for a long time and I talked to him last year for a bit (with last year's vacant spot) and we both talked and both agreed it wasn't the fit at that time and it's probably not the right fit now either. Brent runs a good organization in Regina and he's always been good to me.
JK: The Kelowna Rockets are a win away from winning the league title this year. Guys like Head Coach Ryan Huska was your assistant and Ryan Cuthbert was your captain of the 2003 championship team you coached. Does that make you proud there are some guys that learnt under you that are having success?
MH: Well sure. It's a great city, great ownership group. Bruce Hamilton is a tremendous General Manager, Lorne Frey is a great a head scout and Husky and Cutter are great people and they've done a really good job there. I've followed them closely and hope they can do it again because they've put together a really good string there.
On another note...
Broncos Head Coach / GM Dean Chynoweth is not in the running for the Regina Pats head coaching job despite some Regina-based media reports.
Have a good weekend,