Young lakecity hockey players skated with a National Hockey League great this week at Total Ice Training Centre when former Vancouver Canuck Dave Babych’s Babych 44 Hockey School skated into town.
Babych, a two-time NHL all-star defenceman who played 19 seasons in the league with Winnipeg, Hartford, Vancouver, Philadelphia and Los Angeles, said even as a player, he’s always loved teaching the game to young players.
“We’ve been doing these for 35 years,” Babych said. “My brother [Wayne] started when he was 16.
“I got involved, and now my kids decided they wanted to help out.”
School coaches included Dave and sons Ty Babych (North Shore Winter Club), Jaret Babych (University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, NCAA), Cal Babych (Prince George Cougars, WHL) and Total Ice Training Centre’s Tyrel Lucas, a former player with the Bossier Shreveport Mudbugs of the Central Hockey League.
Age groups consisted of 6-8 years, 9-11 years and 12-plus years. In total, 32 players took part.
This was Babych’s first time hosting a hockey school in Williams Lake, and noted he was impressed with the facility at Total Ice Training Centre.
“This is what you need for skill development,” he said. “You can do lots of close-quarters stuff the kids don’t really get a chance to do on the big ice.”
The camp ran from Monday, Aug. 3, to Friday, Aug. 7.