This weekend at the Burnaby Winter Club the Coquitlam Express hosted their first ever Junior "A" evaluation camp. This first time event is something different from the rookie prospect camp that the Express host at the BWC every single year.
This camp was a little different and a little more competitive with fewer bodies taking part. This weekend the Express had most of their players from their roster that are eligible to return for next year consist of one team take on some players who were invited by the Hockey Operations staff to measure how the invitees compare against some BCHL calibre talent. Players in this camp have come from all parts of North America as the Express look to not leave a stone unturned in their recruiting effrots. The team consisting of Express players also had some invitees on the team to fill the squad.
Head Coach Jon Calvano came up with the idea for the camp this weekend as he continues to work towards rebuilding the Express back to a level where they will challenge for a Fred Page Cup and hopefully back to the RBC.
This weekend was an opportunity to catch up with a few members of the Express organization and get caught up on how the off-season is progressing.
Click to here to listen to Express Head Coach Jon Calvano.
Express President and GM Darcy Rota is very supportive of this initiative. He is very much focused on his Express duties. But his attention is also very much focused on what the Vancouver Canucks are up to. The member of the 82 Canucks is hoping that the 2011 edition of can win the first cup in franchise history. But there is a little emotional confilict for Darcy with former Express Milan Lucic and the Bruins looking to take the Cup to Beantown.
I spoke with Darcy about a number of topics including this weekends camp, some of the players the Express have brought in, the changes the BCHL has made this off-season and of course the Canucks quest for the Cup.
Click to here to listen to Express GM Darcy Rota.
Clinton Atkinson and Cody Michelle were present at camp this weekend. They were acquired by the Express earlier this off-season from Salmon Arm to complete the Brad Reid trade last December. I had a chance to catch up with both of them and get their thoughts on coming to the Express for next season.
Click to here to listen to Clinton Atkinson.
Click to here to listen to Cody Michelle.
The Express have made another trade bringing in Mitch Nardi from Burlington of the OJHL in exchange for future considerations. The 1993 born forward from Hamilton Ontario put up a very respectable 16 goals and 39 points in 44 games.
Click to here to listen to Mitch Nardi.