Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Not just another "consultant"

Outside of hockey circles, the recent move of 75-year-old Scotty Bowman from the Detroit Red Wings to the Chicago Blackhawks may not seem particularly significant. But any time a team adds one of the greatest minds in its sport to its staff, it should be noted.

Coach Bowman had been a "consultant" in Detroit for several seasons. He'll essentially have the same role in Chicago, except that he'll be working alongside his son, Stan, who is the team's assistant GM.

I've had more than a few posts here about the incredible value of veteran coaches and what they bring to a staff. Imagine what Bowman brings to Chicago, a team that didn't reach the NHL playoffs last season and finished tenth in its conference.

Here's one take on why Coach Bowman is among the best coaches ever:

"Titles with three different teams. In different eras. He’s succeeded as a coach and in the front office. And he constantly changes his ways. Certain coaches have a philosophy that works and apply their roster to that way of playing. Bowman always adapted to what he had.

Nobody once suggested that the game had passed him by. Instead, he was ahead of the curve on a lot of things.

He did it with more than one team. He did it during free agency. He did it both before and after the European invasion into the NHL. He was a task-master and an innovator. But more than that, he was a winner. And the best coach ever."

Here's a good video about Coach Bowman. If you've got 10 minutes, it's worth watching.