Some time in the next few days, the Ontario Reign (ECHL) are expected to announce a new head coach.
Later that same day, Hardy visited MayorsManor to talk about his desire to coach the team.
As a follow-up to those articles, here are some additional comments from Hardy – he talks going to Europe and somebody he’s already reached out to for some help if he lands the job in Ontario…
- On the thought of coaching by himself in the ECHL, compared to having a larger staff in the NHL: “He (Justin) explained there’s no assistant with you and that (if I got the job), I’d also be involved in player decisions and pretty much running everything. So, again, some of it would be a learning curve. But, it’s hockey and I know hockey and I know players. I have a lot of people who I can contact. I’ve also talked with Karl Taylor (former Reign coach) and he said that he would be a big help to me – as far as recruiting players and sharing his knowledge of the league.”
- On the nature of his relationship with Taylor over the last few seasons:
“We’re not close friends or anything like that. However, we are associates. He’s been to development camps with the Kings for the last, probably, 10 years. So, I’ve gotten to know him pretty well. He originally came in when Andy Murray was the coach of the Kings. So, I’ve known him for a long time and we’ve always had great conversations. He’s an outstanding individual. He’s just a great guy and he has a real knowledge of the game.”
- On his level of interest in an assistant coach position with Ontario, if he doesn’t get the head job: “It would definitely be something I’d have to think about. At this point in my life, I think it’s time to take the reigns and run with it. It’s been a dream of mine to be a head coach, it doesn’t matter at what level. When I was head coach for the Los Angeles Blades, in the old roller hockey league, I really enjoyed that. I even had Jimmy Fox helping me out as an assistant. We just had a ball watching the players get better and better as the seasons went on. That’s what I want to do. I want to have my own team. I believe that I’m right man for the job in Ontario.”
- On pursuing a head coaching position in Europe (something he spoke about wanting to do during his MayorsManor podcast interview): “Well, I have an agent over there. I had a few things in the works during the summer and unfortunately, they didn’t work out for me. So, by the time I did pursue something over in Europe it was a little bit too late. But, I have taken on an agent over in Europe and if something doesn’t work out with the Reign, maybe Europe will next.”
- On the arena in Ontario: “I first went there for an exhibition game with the Kings a few seasons ago (in addition to playing in an alumni game there a few months ago). It’s just a beautiful building with great fans. They run a top notch venue for the fans. I really enjoyed it, even the dressing room is beautiful. They have a great opportunity there to work towards winning a Kelly Cup. So, I’m very excited. If I was to get the job, it would be a real honor.”
He should know soon enough.
Reign President says ‘Mark Hardy is on the short list of finalists - also notes on another former LA King
MayorsManor audio interview with Mark Hardy – what happened and what’s next
Many frustration for Ontario Reign President Justin Kemp – posted August 2011
Interview with Ontario Reign President Justin Kemp - October 2010