The Seattle Kraken invited Coachella Valley Firebirds assistant coach Jessica Campbell to be behind the bench for their preseason game against the Calgary Flames, Monday. Campbell will become the second woman to ever coach an NHL game when the puck drops at Climate Pledge Arena.
Campbell is currently entering her second season as an assistant for Coachella Valley after being hired in July 2022. There, as a member of Dan Bylsma’s staff, she became the first-ever female assistant coach in the AHL and helped the Firebirds reach the Calder Cup Finals in the team’s inaugural season. They ultimately fell to the Hershey Bears in in overtime of Game Seven.
— Seattle Kraken PR (@SeattleKrakenPR) September 25, 2023
Campbell has been a true trailblazer in hockey as a coach. She served as an assistant coach for Team Germany at the Men’s World Championships in 2022, becoming the first woman in the history of that tournament to ever do so. Before that, she spent time with the USHL’s Tri-City Storm in a player development role.
After her playing career, which saw notable stints with Team Canada, the Malmo Redhawks, and the CWHL’s Calgary Inferno, Campbell also started JC Powerskating where she provided skating and skill development training for NHL names like Tyson Jost, Damon Severson, Luke Schenn, and current Washington Capitals defenseman Joel Edmundson.
The first woman to coach an NHL game was Kori Cheverie, who did so just days ago with the Pittsburgh Penguins. The PWHL Montreal team’s head coach has served as a guest instructor for the Pens during both their development camp and training camp.
Coach Vellucci on having Kori Cheverie behind the bench: "It was great on the bench today. Kori and I were picking in overtime who should be out there. Shootout – we did it together. It was a lot of fun to get a different perspective. Just proud that she was there with us today." pic.twitter.com/dR9OBiwgIL
— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) September 24, 2023
The only other women known to have worked on an NHL bench during a game are trainers Aisha Visram and Jodi van Rees. Visram did so for the Los Angeles Kings and van Rees did the same for the Montreal Canadiens.
The Capitals’ Emily Engel-Natzke became the first, full-time female coach of an NHL team when she was hired by the team in 2022. Engel-Natzke is the team’s video coordinator so she does not actively coach from behind the bench during games.
Update (10 pm): The Kraken snapped a photo of Campbell behind their bench.
Behind the bench in Seattle tonight, Coach Campbell! 👏
📍: SEA pic.twitter.com/af89VVgmoX
— Seattle Kraken (@SeattleKraken) September 26, 2023
The Flames ended up winners of the game, taking it home 3-2 in a shootout.
Headline photo: Angela Burger/Calgary Wranglers
RMNB is not associated with the Washington Capitals; Monumental Sports, the NHL, or its properties. Not even a little bit.
All original content on russianmachineneverbreaks.com is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)– unless otherwise stated or superseded by another license. You are free to share, copy, and remix this content so long as it is attributed, done for noncommercial purposes, and done so under a license similar to this one.