Maurice happy to share his coaching knowledge with Ehler’s father

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Paul Maurice received an unusual visitor to his office Thursday morning – the parent of one of his young players. Uh-oh. But rather than understanding why little Nikky didn’t have more ice time, the topic was a bit broader.

Heinz Ehlers, Denmark’s national men’s hockey team head coach, was there to pick the brains for the Winnipeg bench chief.

“It’s nice to talk to another trainer who isn’t trying to steal your job. Yet.” Maurice broke down following his club’s training at the Canada Life Center.

Ehlers is the father of flashy Winnipeg winger Nikolaj. He also happens to be her coach at the international level, which will include the country’s first appearance at the Winter Olympics next February in Beijing. The games will be played on a smaller area of ​​North American-style ice, which prompted seniors Ehlers and Maurice to pull the breeze.

“We’ve spent probably an hour talking about what we’re trying to do,” Maurice said. “The things he plans to go on a smaller surface of ice, the issues they face in terms of puck breaking, that smaller ice stuff, so we spent some time with that, watched a video, talked about what we’re trying to do. ”

Maurice, who spent the 2012-13 season coaching the KHL before landing the job with Winnipeg, says the meeting was mutually beneficial as he also came away with new perspectives.

“This professional development of coaches is very difficult. We don’t share much with each other, ”said Maurice of the typical NHL attitude. “He made the comment about how he thinks that in Europe the coaches are a little more open than here in North America. Which is probably really true. The things that I think we are trying to improve from last year to this year are similar to the things he’s going to want to do. That’s all I want to tell you. It works pretty well for us right now. Showed him how and why we got there there, places where we thought we could be better at these things. ”

The Ehlers family are in town for an extended visit with the Jets now playing seven straight home games. For Nikolaj, this means that he will suddenly eat a lot better than usual.

Heinz Ehlers, father of Jets forward Nikolaj Ehlers and Danish national hockey team coach, watches the Jets practice Thursday at the Canada Life Center.

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MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Heinz Ehlers, father of Jets forward Nikolaj Ehlers and Danish national hockey team coach, watches the Jets practice Thursday at the Canada Life Center.

“My freezer is full right now. Let’s put it that way. And I couldn’t,” he said. “My cooking skills are not great. I can do simple things, I’m fine, let’s put it that way. That’s why the last year and a half here has been tough for me, I didn’t have my mom to come and cook.My mom and dad do the cooking.

In addition to filling her belly, Ehlers hopes she can start filling the net with greater frequency. He’s only scored two goals this year, scored 19 seconds apart in a single game in Los Angeles last week. Maybe a little home cooking – literally and figuratively in this case – will get it started.

“My dad didn’t come here often because he was a coach in Switzerland at the time. Now he only has the national team so he has a lot more free time,” said Ehlers. “My sister and mom have been here about twice a season. My brother has been here once a year, maybe, because he also plays at home. They try to come whenever they can. I appreciate that. It’s really nice to have them here, especially since they haven’t been able to do it for a year and a half. We appreciate our time right now. It’s very amusing. ”

Hope for Helly: It’s been an eventful week for Winnipeg’s No. 1 goaltender. After returning with the club on Saturday night after their 2-1 overtime loss, Hellebuyck joined his wife, Andrea, as she prepared to give birth to their first child. He missed Monday’s practice, with the delivery of a healthy baby boy early Tuesday morning. Hellebuyck missed his team’s game that night, a 4-3 shootout victory over Dallas, but he was expected to be back on the ice on Thursday after Wednesday’s day off. .

“He was not feeling well this morning,” Maurice said of his masked man who disappeared after skating. “So (Wednesday) he was trying to convince (goalie coach) Wade Flaherty that he should play both (games this weekend), based on free time. And then he wasn’t feeling well this morning. So we left it at home and like the rest of these guys the sniffles mean you can’t come to the rink wholesale. So test it out in the next period and keep your fingers crossed. good hope. ”

Hellebuyck got COVID-19 in late August, telling the media a month later at training camp how it hit him hard. He also had side effects after being vaccinated weeks later. The hope now is that he no longer tests positive, especially with center Mark Scheifele and captain Blake Wheeler already contracting the virus at the start of this season.

Winnipeg hosts Chicago on Friday night, followed by a Saturday night visit from the New York Islanders. Hellebuyck was likely to share those games with substitute Eric Comrie, but now his availability for both is in question. The Jets recalled that Manitoba Moose threw Mikhail Berdin on Thursday as an insurer, just as they did for Tuesday night’s game against the Stars.

“It was good to take another start and get back into the net,” Comrie said of his second appearance of the season earlier this week. “It’s more of what I’ve been used to in my career. I guess the last part was a little longer. During the first part of my career, I played almost every day. So that’s what I’m used to and what I like to do. ”

So far, everything has been going well, with a 2.40 goals against average and .915 save percentage to go along with his 2-0-0 record. Hellebuyck is 3-2-2 so far with a 3.42 GAA and 0.899 save percentage.

“Bucky is a great goalie, obviously, and you know, when you have a guy like Coms coming in and he can play and he does what he does, it’s pretty amazing to have goalkeepers like that, ”Ehlers said. “Our game plan is not changing. We have very good goalies.

[email protected] Twitter: @mikemcintyrewpg

Mike McIntyre


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