Present and former NHLers hit the ice in Kelowna to teach youngsters – Kelowna Information

NHLers hit the ice

Madison Erhardt

Current and former NHLers hit the ice at the Kelowna Capital News Centre on Wednesday as a part of Okanagan Hockey’s summer camp programs.

The camps are coached by a star-studded lineup including former NHLer Josh Gorges, current assistant coach to the Minnesota Wild Brett McLean and the Colorado Avalanche’s Tyson Jost.

“It has been a few years building up to it. Some of these guys have been with me for a few years at this location running those pro camps. Now adding Tyson to the mix it is a huge enhancement to what we are doing. I can’t think of another place that is running camps like this or having that type of a resume leading kids in development on the ice,” said Mack O’Rourke, manager of operations for Okanagan Hockey.

O’Rouke says the NHLers focus on their specific skill sets during drills.

“With Josh, we are looking at defence specifically. So they are doing everything from the defensive zone out. Brett’s camps are all based on speed and skills. That is something that he excelled at as a player. With Tyson, he is an unbelievable shooter so we thought we would focus on that.”

Jost says his favourite part of coaching is seeing how happy the kids are when they hit the ice.

“It has been awesome. I think the main thing, that makes it so much fun is working with the kids and seeing the smiles on their faces and how much they enjoy being out on the ice, so it is pretty refreshing. It is very energizing too and it has been awesome just to see how they have grown throughout the week and just their excitement when they come out on the ice is something special.”

O’Rourke says kids participating in the camp also got custom jerseys and swag bags with autographed pucks.

The four-week camp wraps up on August 13.

Comments are closed.