Former Coach of the Yorkton Terriers and Melville Millionaires Don Chesney has been hired by the MJHL's Waywayseecappo Wolverines as a scout for Western Canada (Saskatchewan, Alberta, B.C.) Wayway Coach/GM Barry Butler made it official with me on the radio this morning, and Don was kind enough to take a break from building fence to have a little chat too.
CS: Don, you have no shortage of Junior Hockey experience whether it be Jr. 'A' or Jr. 'B', and you're getting back into it, can't get enough of it obviously.
Don Chesney: Well, I'm real excited about the fact that a Junior 'A' team in the area feels I can help them with their program, and whether it's coaching, assistant coaching or scouting, you feel part of the team, and I'm proud to be a Wolverine this morning.
CS: As far as your duties, just go over what you'll be doing and what ground you'll be covering.
DC: Well, basically they want me to do Saskatchewan, Alberta, a bit of B.C., and basically all the recruiting, along with scouting. So I'm excited the kids they have listed in Manitoba that their scouts have found, I'll get a chance to go through the list kids and talk to them and try and get them to lean towards the Wayway Wolverines. There are so many Junior 'A' teams around with great programs and I think Wayway, under the direction of Barry Butler have put a lot of guys in the NHL over the years and I'm excited to be a part of it.
CS: How did the whole process go? Was it something you pursued, did Barry come to you, a little of both?
DC: Actually Barry ran into me, we're pretty good friends. I saw him at a cow sale a while back and he asked me what I was doing, I'd just finished calving and was out at the ranch. He said he wanted to meet with me and he did, and he gave me an offer I couldn't refuse.
CS: And you guys go way back don't you?
DC: Yeah you bet, I've known Barry a long time. When he was down in Cleveland, I had some dealings with him when I was with the ol' Lebret Eagles, so we go back a long ways. Waywayseecappo's a First Nations hockey club, and he's done well there, and I did well with Lebret and with the St. Phillips Rangers with the same ownership. So hopefully we have some ideas and some different personalities that we can make it work and be a contender in the Manitoba Junior Hockey League.
CS: Wayway's sure reversed their reputation, they've been contenders the last two seasons and have a lot of guys coming back this year. Did that play a part in your decision?
DC: Well for sure. You always want to jump on board, but whether you're on a first place team or a last place team, as long as you feel you can help that hockey team, that's my job, and right now I'm quite excited to be working with their program.
CS: So what do you do first? What's on the agenda?
DC: They're bringing some kids in for a recruiting weekend in the near future, and they want me there to talk to the kids and to the parents. Then of course there's some camps out west, and some down south they want me to go to. They're on a pretty high-end budget and they wanna get things done, so hopefully it'll work out.