Chicago NHL team hires Kendall Coyne Schofield as first female development coach

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Kendall Coyne Schofield believes there will be a time in her new role as player development coach that a Chicago prospect will delight her for preaching one thing and doing the opposite on the ice herself.She is not worried about how she will be received as a woman in men’s professional sport.

“While I might be the first coach a lot of these players have worked with, I don’t see that being a problem,” Coyne Schofield said on Monday. “During my hockey career, I’ve been on the ice with so many players and I’ve earned the respect of those players for my skills, for my merit, and that’s what they’re going to see me. when I walk. the door as a coach. ”

Coyne Schofield is the first woman to become a player development coach in the franchise’s 94-year history. While planning to continue playing for the U.S. Women’s National Team, the 28-year-old will work with the coaching staff at Chicago’s top minor league branch in Rockford, Ill., And act as specialist in the growth of youth hockey.

WATCH | Kendall Coyne Schofield makes NHL history:

The American made history Friday when she became the first woman to compete in the NHL skills competition when she raced around the ice in the Faster Skater competition. 1:11

“The addition of talented people with diverse and multi-faceted backgrounds like Kendall, Erik and Juan improves our operations as we assess the changing landscape of hockey at all levels and continue to build and maintain an elite hockey system. CEO Stan Bowman said in a statement. published by the team. “Each of these individuals brings a unique experience to their position. ”

Hockey has not progressed as quickly as other sports, such as baseball, where Kim Ng became general manager of the Miami Marlins, or football and basketball, where women are full-time assistant coaches. Coyne Schofield hopes to help make this change.

Diffusion experience

“I think becoming the first player development coach [the Chicago team’s] The story speaks volumes, and it will definitely create the next opportunity for a young girl, ”said Coyne Schofield. I really think that is part of the larger growth that we are seeing for women in the sport of hockey. ”

Coyne Schofield joins an increasingly sluggish roster of women working in hockey operations for an NHL team.

  • Retired Canadian star Hayley Wickenheiser is assistant director of player development for the Toronto Maple Leafs
  • Expansion Seattle Kraken has hired Hall of Famer Cammi Granato as a professional scout and Alexandra Mandrycky as director of hockey strategy and research.

Coyne Schofield previously held broadcasting positions with NBC Sports and the San Jose Sharks. She said a conversation with Granato made her want to get into hockey operations and that she would like to spend a day in training or management.

“I think this is the first step in this process,” she said. “I think this is the first step in what’s possible, and I can’t wait to have this experience, to get my feet wet, to learn from so many people and top class champions within the Chicago organization in this role. ”

Chicago also added former NHL forward Erik Condra as player development coach, hired USA Hockey’s Juan Gonzalez as minor league strength and conditioning coach, and promoted Meghan Hunter to manager. of hockey administration and amateur scout.

“The addition of talented people with diverse and multi-faceted backgrounds like Kendall, Erik and Juan improves our operations as we assess the changing landscape of hockey at all levels and continue to build and maintain an elite hockey system. CEO Stan Bowman said in a statement. . “Each of these individuals brings a unique experience to their position. ”

Condra will join Coyne Schofield to work with the Rockford IceHogs after playing eight seasons in the NHL. Gonzalez was most recently a strength and conditioning consultant for the USA Hockey National Team Development Program. Hunter had been Bowman’s senior executive assistant prior to his promotion.

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