Thursday, November 5, 2009

Bonner not looking for coach . . . now

Daily News Sports Editor
Craig Bonner, the general manager of the WHL’s Kamloops Blazers, laughed Thursday night when asked if he would be meeting with a potential head coach this weekend.
According to Dean Millard of The Team 1260, an Edmonton radio station, Dean Brockman, who has won three straight SJHL titles as general manager and head coach of the Humboldt Broncos, is to be in Kamloops this weekend “to meet with management.”
Asked about the report Thursday night, a chuckling Bonner replied: “Coming in here? . . . Uhh, no. I won’t be here this weekend.”
Bonner then laughed again and said it was the second rumour he heard yesterday.
“Someone told me that (Michael Dyck) was the new coach,” Bonner said.
Dyck, who was on the Vancouver Giants’ coaching staff with Bonner for a couple of recent seasons, is the former head coach of the Lethbridge Hurricanes. His contract wasn’t renewed after last season and he now is helping the U of Lethbridge Pronghorns.
Bonner said he hasn’t spoken to anyone about the position since firing head coach Barry Smith on Oct. 26 and promoting assistant Scott Ferguson to interim head coach. And furthermore, Bonner said, he doesn’t plan on talking to anyone, at least not in the immediate future.
“I haven’t talked with anyone,” Bonner said. “I have emailed a few people back telling them we’re going to give these guys a chance here for a bit and see how it goes.”
Which means that Ferguson and assistant coach Geoff Smith will continue to run the Blazers on the ice.
The Blazers, who have lost seven games in a row, are at home to the Edmonton Oil Kings tonight. Bonner said he isn’t distressed about the way things are going, but admitted to being “disappointed.”
“I think the hard part now is staying patient,” he said. “In saying that, there could be some adjustments made. We won’t really know until we get all our guys back. It will be an interesting time with more of a full lineup starting (tonight).”
The Blazers will welcome centre Colin Smith into the lineup for the first time this season, and also get centre C.J. Stretch back from suspension. This means there will be healthy scratches and Bonner feels this will provide competition for spots and should result in some improvement.
As for impending player moves, he said: “I’m always looking. . . . If something is going to help us improve, yeah.”

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