For the first time in NHL history two head coaches of Native American descent will compete against each other when the Buffalo Sabres do battle with the Philadelphia Flyers tonight. Ted Nolan bosses the bench for the Sabres – Craig Berube for the Orange & Black. The Philadelphia Daily News elaborates:
“They are First Nations men, to be precise; that is the correct nomenclature in Canada. Sabres coach Ted Nolan is an Ojibwe from Ontario. Flyers coach Craig Berube is part cree, and from Alberta. “
Nolan recently returned to coaching in the big league after five years away from the NHL. He is a former Jack Adams winner as NHL coach of the year.
Berube is new to calling the shots behind an NHL bench. He took over for Peter Laviolette on October 7, 2013. After a tough first month, Berube’s squad is headed in the right direction. The Flyers are (5-3-2) in their last ten games.
— Sam Carchidi (@BroadStBull) November 21, 2013
On tonight’s significance, Ted Nolan told Philly.com:
“The significance of it is not really what it means to me, or Craig Berube, but what it means when you think of what our ancestors went through.”
Congratulations Craig Berube and Ted Nolan.