Should the Canucks Consider Adding Another Coach?

The recent promotion of Yogi Švejkovský to Assistant Coach has certainly brought a lot of optimism and excitement to the Vancouver Canucks’ coaching staff. However, this move also raises a pertinent question: Should the Canucks consider adding another coach to fill the void left by Švejkovský’s transition from Skills Coach to Assistant Coach?

The Role of a Skills Coach

A Skills Coach plays a critical role in any hockey team. Their primary responsibility is to work on individual players’ technical skills, ensuring they are continually improving and refining their abilities. This includes everything from skating, shooting, passing, and stickhandling to more nuanced aspects like positioning and decision-making under pressure. The Skills Coach often works closely with players in one-on-one sessions, focusing on their unique needs and helping them reach their full potential.

Yogi Švejkovský excelled in this role for the Canucks. His ability to connect with players on a personal level and his deep understanding of the game made him an invaluable asset. His promotion to Assistant Coach, while undoubtedly a positive development for him and the team, does leave a gap that needs to be addressed.

Can Švejkovský Handle Dual Coaching Roles?

One possibility is that Švejkovský could continue to handle some of his previous responsibilities as Skills Coach while taking on his new duties as Assistant Coach. This approach has its pros and cons.


  1. Continuity: Švejkovský’s existing rapport with the players and his understanding of their strengths and weaknesses would remain intact.
  2. Seamless Transition: Having one person handle both roles could ensure a seamless integration of skills development into the broader team strategy.


  1. Workload: The dual responsibilities could become overwhelming, potentially leading to burnout or a dilution of effectiveness in both roles.
  2. Focus: Juggling both roles might result in neither receiving the full attention it requires, which could impact the players’ development and the team’s overall performance.

The Case for Adding Another Skills Coach

To maintain the momentum and ensure that the players continue to receive the dedicated skills training they need, the Canucks should strongly consider adding another Skills Coach. Here are a few reasons why this could be beneficial:

  1. Specialization: A dedicated Skills Coach can focus entirely on player development, ensuring that the technical aspects of the game are continually being honed.
  2. Support for Švejkovský: By bringing in another Skills Coach, Švejkovský can focus fully on his new role as Assistant Coach, allowing him to bring fresh ideas and strategies to the team’s overall play.
  3. Player Benefits: Players will benefit from having a dedicated coach who can work with them individually, helping them to address specific areas of improvement without the distraction of broader team responsibilities.

Potential Candidates

The search for a new Skills Coach should focus on individuals with a proven track record of player development. This could include former players who have transitioned into coaching roles or current coaches who have specialized in skills training. The ideal candidate would have a strong understanding of modern hockey techniques, excellent communication skills, and the ability to connect with players on a personal level.

Balancing the Coaching Staff

Adding another coach would also help balance the coaching staff, ensuring that each aspect of the team’s development is adequately covered. The Canucks’ current coaching lineup, featuring Rick Tocchet, Adam Foote, Yogi Švejkovský, Ian Clark, Daniel Sedin, Henrik Sedin, and Sergei Gonchar, brings a wealth of experience and diverse perspectives. However, the addition of a dedicated Skills Coach would complement this lineup and ensure that no area of player development is overlooked.

Final Thoughts

The Canucks’ decision to promote Yogi Švejkovský is a positive step, reflecting the trust and respect he has earned within the organization. However, to ensure that the team continues to progress and that players receive the individual attention they need, it would be prudent to consider adding another Skills Coach. This move would help maintain the focus on player development while allowing Švejkovský to excel in his new role as Assistant Coach.

As the Canucks continue to refine their coaching strategy and structure, the addition of a dedicated Skills Coach could be the key to unlocking further potential and achieving greater success in the coming seasons.

Go Canucks Go!

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