I caught up with new assistant coach Ryne McKinnon earlier today.
Ryne's spending his summer in Flin Flon and we spoke via telephone this afternoon.
DD: Hey Ryne how are ya?
McKinnon: Pretty good, you?
DD: I'm good. So when are we going to see you in Kindersley?
McKinnon: I'm coming down there on the 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th (of August), for the (rookie) camp there. Then i'll be back on the 23rd for good, the rest of the year.
DD: So, new job, how did you find out?
McKinnon: Larry gave me a call, one night, and I thought he was just phoning to update me on the team, because I was scouting in Regina for him. I thought he was just phoning to see if I was going to be back doing that. Then he was telling me about how the assistant (Colin OHara) got the coaching job in Nipiwan and he was looking for a trainer and an assistant coach and everything.
I was like, “wait, wait, wait. You're looking for an assistant coach?”
He's like, “yeah”
I was like, “and you were phoning me, to see if I wanted to be the assistant coach?”
And he's like, “yeah, you know, just wondering if you wanted to take the next step, and go to the next level, stay in the game.”
I was like, “well, let's do it then!”
DD: That's exciting.
McKinnon: Yeah, I'm pretty happy about it.
DD: So do you have any coaching experience?
McKinnon: I have my coaching certificate. I took it through school. Then I helped out, as part of the courses, I had to help out with a double A team (in Regina). Other than that I just got my junior experience.
DD: This will be a good step to get into coaching. Is that something you want to do?
McKinnon: Yeah, if the opportunity's there. I know I'll learn a lot from Larry. (I'll) definitely learn a lot this year.
DD: It's going to be a little different, I guess, being on the other side of things eh?
McKinnon: (Laughs) Yeah, that's forsure.
DD: You've played with some of these guys. Is that going to affect the usual coach/player relationship?
McKinnon: I don't think so. They know that I'll have a new role there. I mean, we'll still have the same respect for each other that we did so I think everything will be fine. (The players and I) might be on a more personal level, other than that it should be the same.
DD: Talk about your history with Larry. You've played with him a few times.
McKinnon: Yeah. I first started out with him in Dryden. He let me come try out there and then (he) signed me to a card. Been with him ever since.
Then when I found out that Dryden was going to be folding, in my 20th year, or possibly folding, because they didn't have enough funds, and (when I found out) that Larry got the coaching job in Kindersley, I wanted to finish up playing under him. I got the trade (to Kindersley) and now I'll be coaching with him.
DD: That's awesome. I'm looking forward to (you being in Kindersley).
McKinnon: Yeah. I'm just happy to be back at the rink everyday.
DD: Is coaching (being a head coach) Jr A hockey something you want to do?
McKinnon: We'll see where this year takes me. My long term goal is to become a police officer. That's the classes I'll be taking, for my degree. But if I can do this until that happens then that'd be awesome too.
DD: Forsure, and you'll keep in shape too.
McKinnon:Oh yeah! (laughs) Especially with Larry's program.
DD: He'll have you working out right beside him.
McKinnon: No doubt.
What a day! It's almost time to head for the lake and I'm still busy! I do have more Klipper news and leads that I am working on this weekend. But I am definitely shutting it down for a couple days at the lake.
I promise more Klipper news bright and early Monday morning!
Have a great weekend!