It was 1992 and I had just turned 16 years old. I joined the Spokane Chiefs for the last two games of their regular season in Victoria. I was the youngest on the team, didn’t know anyone and I walked nervously into the dressing room.
And that was when Jared Bednar walked over and introduced himself.
Bedsy was 19 and he made me comfortable. He talked to me on the bus, invited me to play cards and hang out with the guys. He made me feel like I was welcomed and that I belonged.
Jared understood that he could make a difference.
Unfortunately, Jared got traded early into the next season. We never kept in touch and he probably never knew the impact he had on me.I never forgot him but I also never had the chance to thank him.
I got the opportunity in this episode.
If you are reading this, you know Jared Bednar is the head coach of the Colorado Avalanche. You probably know he was nominated for the Jack Adams Award as the top coach in the NHL in 2018. You also might know he won a Kelley Cup in the ECHL and the Calder Cup in the AHL as a coach…
…but you might not know what type of person Jared Bednar is.
In this episode of Up My Hockey you get to hear from Jared Bednar the player, the coach, AND the person.
Bedsy is one of the best people you’ll ever have the pleasure of meeting. He is approachable, relaxed, caring, warm and loves a good laugh – traits you might not automatically attribute to a NHL head coach of one the league’s top teams.
I believe that is what makes him great.
He embodies what is right about the new style of coaching in the NHL. He cares about his players because he understands they are people first. As he says in the interview “happy players are better players.” He wants his team to be happy.
Sounds simple doesn’t it?
The NHL is a league about results and often coaches get caught focusing on the wins and losses. But when a coach like Bednar can place emphasis on the well being and growth of the people (players) first, often the results will take care of themselves.
I welcome you to get to know Jared Bednar.