A familiar face will be behind the bench of the Red Deer Optimist Midget Chiefs next season as Doug Quinn returns to coach a team he led to two straight national titles.
Red Deer Minor Hockey general manager Dallas Gaume said Quinn was approached a few weeks ago about returning to coach the Midget Chiefs.
“He took his time and did his due dilligence, talked to his staff, and we’re excited to say they’ll all be returning,” said Gaume.
Quinn stepped down from coaching the Midget Chiefs after the 2013-14. He coached the team for five seasons, leading the Midget Chiefs to five straight Alberta Midget Hockey League and provincial titles.
What capped the success off was back-to-back Telus Cup national crowns in 2012 and 2013.
Gaume pointed to the staff Quinn is bringing with him, calling them a “more than qualified” group of assistant coaches. The staff includes Mike Moller, Al Parada, Rob Hamill and Peter Freistadt. All four were a part of the Chiefs national titles.
“Doug’s had a good track record as a coach since he started coaching atom hockey really,” said Gaume. “He’s done very well at every level he’s coached.
“Plain and simply put, Doug is an excellent coach. He communicates and relates very well to young players. He’s good at building a team and getting the most out of his team.”
Quinn, himself a former Chiefs captain in the 1980s, played in the Western Hockey League and was drafted by the Vancouver Canucks in 1983, fifth round 90th overall. A car crash ended his promising NHL career, but he played at the University of Calgary and went to work with Quinn Pumps, started by his father Jim.
Last season, the Midget Chiefs finished with a 19-11-4 record with 42 points. They had the same amount of points as the Calgary Midget Flames and the Foothills CFR Bisons, but placed third on tiebreakers. They lost in the division semifinal to the Bisons 3-1.