The Chilliwack Chiefs are proud to announce the hiring of Abbotsford native Mackenzie Skapski as their new goaltending coach. Skapski, a former 170th overall draft pick of the New York Rangers is a highly regarded young coach who is eager for this opportunity. He will use his experience as a professional goaltender (2-0 record at the NHL level) to help the Chiefs goaltenders as well as youth goaltenders in the community. Skapski has been working with the Fraser Valley Thunderbirds program, as well as many other goaltenders in the Fraser Valley. He works as a goaltending consultant with the Portland Winterhawks, and is partnered with Jeff Malcolm with Own Assertion Goaltending Consultants. Mackenzie specializes in individual consultation and video breakdown for goaltenders looking to take the next step in their development.
“I’m excited to help continue building on the success the Chiefs have already established and I plan to be a resource for the community of Chilliwack.” said Skapski.
There are plans in place for Skapski to offer weekly private sessions in Chilliwack, as well as 2, week-long goaltender specific camps that he will host this summer. Information on those camps and registration will be coming available in short order. When asked about working with the Chiefs goaltenders Skapski said “I’m looking forward to adding value with the organization and its goalies, and I look forward to the work ahead.”
The Chilliwack Chiefs would like to thank their former goaltending coach Grant Rollheiser for all of his contributions to the team. Grant is a realtor, as well as an aspiring firefighter in Chilliwack, with all of his work commitments both sides agreed that this was the best course of action. Grant will stay on with the team working with the Chilliwack Chiefs Hockey Academy, as well as assisting with other goaltender specific programs. Chiefs Head Coach and General Manager, Brian Maloney, had this to say on the recent change in the goaltending department. “First, we want to thank Grant Rollheiser for all of his help over the years with our team. Grant is a great person, and an extremely well respected member of our community. This was not an easy decision, but probably the right one for both sides. Grant will stay on with us as much as his work schedule permits, and we look forward to continuing to work with him.”
When asked about what the hiring of Skapski means for the Chilliwack Chiefs, Maloney spoke to his excitement about the development of not only the Chiefs goaltenders, but minor hockey goaltenders in Chilliwack. “This is a great step for our organization. We did a lot of homework on Mackenzie prior to making this decision. He is a very well respected young coach with a bright future and an eagerness to continue to improve. Throughout the interview process he was extremely calculated, prepared, and well thought-out. He has a clear vision for what he can bring to our goaltenders (Chiefs and young goaltenders in the community) that aligns perfectly with the way we see things moving as an organization.”
Thank you Grant for all of your contributions, and welcome to Chilliwack Mackenzie Skapski!