He's back! Not quite on the bench, but behind the bench is where we will be finding Scott Niedermayer in Anaheim.
The Ducks, who have been using Niedermayer for scouting and working with their AHL affiliate since he retired in 2010, have officially added the former captain to their coaching staff.
Niedermayer will join Bob Woods and Brad Lauer as assistant coaches to Bruce Boudreau, although his primary function will be practices and at home games. The 39 year old former Norris winning defenseman is not too keen on grueling travel.
“Obviously the last couple of years, I’ve worked with players down in Syracuse and at Norfolk at the start of this year,” said Niedermayer on a conference call. ”I realized that I do enjoy it, more than maybe I had thought when I was a player. I probably couldn’t predict this when I was a player. I’m excited about the chance to try and help.”
Never known to be a verbose man of many words, Niedermayer alway led by example and when he spoke, players listened. Just being around him had a calming effect and you know that the players will not tune him out. His is one voice they really will hear.
“His knowledge of the game is paramount," said Boudreau. "Players of his ilk, they see things that you don’t see. And that kind of input is always invaluable.
GM Bob Murray, who lately seems to be as silent in the media as Niedermayer was as a player, was very enthusiastic about this latest development.
“As a player, Scott was one of the great leaders and winners of all time, making him a tremendous addition to our coaching staff,” commented Murray. “His knowledge of the game and relationship with the players will be a great benefit for us. And he’s even a better person than a hockey player.”
Niedermayer had led an informal practice at Anaheim Ice earlier in the week after a tentative CBA had been reached and agreed upon. Training camp is expected to start on Sunday, January 13.