Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Mutual respect between player and coach

Good story in the NY Times about the interesting dynamic between Alex Ovechkin, one of the NHL's brightest stars, and his 53-year-old coach, Bruce Boudreau.

According to the article, Coach Boudreau "was quick to embrace Ovechkin, his enthusiastic superstar, who offered to do whatever was necessary to win. And it worked wonders. The Capitals charged from 14th place into a playoff berth, their 37-17-7 record under Boudreau earning him the N.H.L.’s Coach of the Year award."

As for the 23-year-old Ovechkin, he says his coach knows and trusts his team:

"He brings the team energy, and he brings the team trust. He trusts players, and he knows what situations for us to play. It’s really good when a coach knows you.”

NY Rangers coach Tom Renney believes the relationship between Ovechkin and Boudreau is built on "mutual respect":

As a coach, we don’t know it all. We shouldn’t pretend we do. Bruce is very much like that. But at the same time, he knows where to draw the line. I think his athletes know that, even his star people.”