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Leafs looking to fill key positions after coach and president tender resignations

The Nelson Daily Sports
By The Nelson Daily Sports
April 23rd, 2014

Fresh from hosting the very successful 2014 Cyclone Taylor Cup, the Nelson Leafs are now looking to fill two key off-ice positions after president Russell Stocks and head coach Frank Maida recently tendered their resignations to the hockey club.

Both Stocks and Maida were instrumental in making the Leafs one of elite franchises in the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League.

“I’m not really surprised,” Leaf treasurer, Gord Davis told The Nelson Daily Tuesday.

“Coaches at the Junior B level don’t stick around endlessly and Frank has been with us for three great years.”

“The same also applies to the president’s job as the position involves many, many hours of work people like Russell have work commitments and a young family so we’re very thankful for the time that both of them have put in,” Davis added.

Stocks has been involved with the Leafs for five years starting as vice president and serving as president for the past four years. 

Davis said Stocks was the driving force behind Nelson hosting the 2014 Cyclone Taylor Cup as well as bring the team’s website and webcast operations into a new and modern dimension. 

Davis said Stocks would remain on the board as past president to help guide the remaining directors through to next season. 

Maida joined the Leafs during the summer of 2011 after coach Chris Shaw suddenly left the Heritage City franchise for a position in the BC Hockey League with Vernon.

Maida, who was an assistant to head coach Simon Wheeldon the last time Nelson won the KIJHL title in 2009, won Coach of the Year in 2013 before leading Nelson to the Murdoch Divisional regular season title in 2014.

Nelson finished fourth at the Cyclone Taylor Cup and was the only team to take points from eventual champion Beaver Valley — playing to a 2-2 tie against the Nitehawks during the round robin in one of the best played games in brief history of the NDCC Arena.

Unfortunately, Maida, finishing with an overall record of 109-53-3-11, was unable to coach Nelson pasts the second round of the Murdoch Division playoffs, losing once to Castlegar and twice to Beaver Valley — the eventual KIJHL champs the past three seasons.

“(Finding someone local) would be a great way to go and personally I’m very hopeful that we can work something out,” Davis explained, adding the club would be leaning on Maida to use his junior hockey contact to help find the new skipper for the Green and White.

“That certainly would be our first choice is to find someone local to fill the coaching position,” Davis added. “I really don’t have any particular individual in mind at this moment . . . but it’s early.”

Davis said the Leaf board has not met since the Cyclone Taylor Cup tournament but a meeting would be scheduled very soon to deal with the two vacancies.

“We’d like to get a coach in place as soon as possible,” Davis said.

“There are spring camps and recruiting coming up. The job doesn’t end in April it starts in April for the next season so it’s something we have to get on right away . . ..”

“The sooner the better.”

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