USA Hockey Magazine

January 2017

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12 // JANUARY 2017 USAHOCKEYMAGAZINE.COM O F F W I N G 3 B E Y O N D T H E X ' S A N D O ' S PHOTO BY USA Hockey Magazine Archives Bench Management: g By Dan Daikawa, Head Coach of the Brookings Blizzard Be Prepared Being an effective bench manag- er starts long before the game begins. By the time you get to the bench for warm-ups, you should be ready to go. Who is in charge of the water bot- tles, grease board and first aid kit? Which coach is assigned with chang- ing the forwards and defensemen? Who's opening the gates and attend- ing to injured players who return to the bench? These may seem like simple things, but in the heat of the game being orga- nized can make a big difference. Communication C o m m u n i c a t i o n d u r i n g t h e course of the game can be the dif- ference between having the right match ups, and having too many men on the ice. Players should know what line or defensive pairing is next up, and when it's time to change. Penalized players should know if they 're joining the play or returning to the bench when their penalty has expired. Goaltenders should be aware if and when they're coming off the ice for an extra attacker in the final minute While assistant coaches are vital to every team's success, the team must speak with one voice during crucial times. That voice should come from the head coach. Be Aware Coaches need to be aware of w h a t 's h a p p e n i n g o n t h e i c e a n d make the necessary adjustments. Yo u g e t c a u g h t u p w a t c h i n g t h e game and your players won't know who is up next. It's important to be organized or things can break down quickly. I keep a card in my pocket with our line and D combinations, power play and penalty killing units to keep things organized. Your Chance To Teach S o m e c o a c h e s v i e w g a m e situations as the perfect opportunity to teach. Some coaches prefer to wait until an ice cut or after the game. I've often heard that practices are the coach's time to teach and games are a time for players to showcase what they've learned. It's OK to give players small reminders but you don't want to over teach. T i m i n g a n d t o n e o f v o i c e a r e important when getting your point across. Don't jump down a player's throat the minute they return to the bench. Give them time to catch their breath and get a drink of water. Also, don't yell down at them from your perch. Get down to their level (sitting or kneeling next to them) and speak in a positive tone while explaining what you're looking for. Keep It Cool Players are a reflection of their coach. As a role model for your players, you set the tone for how the rest of your team will act. Your demeanor o n t h e b e n c h w i l l o f t e n t i m e s b e reflected by your players when they're on the ice. A coach who is calm and collected will likely be mirrored by a team that plays with composure. Conversely, if you're a hot head, it's reasonable to assume that your players will lose their cool when they're on the ice. I always tell my players to let their play do the talking. You don't need to be chirping other players or the offi- cials. I tell them that we'll take care of the refs and you take care of the game. I try not to say too much to the refs, but I want the players to know I have their backs. P Players are a reflection of their coach. As a role model for your players, you set the tone for how the rest of your team will act. 1 2 3 4 5 A Matter of Planning and Execution W hen it comes to bench man- agement, there's more to coaching than just open- ing the door and sending out the next wave of players. Being an effective bench boss is often an overlooked aspect of being a good coach. But if your bench operates like a Beatles song ("Helter Skelter"), it may reflect how your team plays once it hits the ice. Here are a few things to remember bef ore your next game:

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