- Man pleads guilty but mentally ill in 2013 murder
- Telephone, computer network outages at 22 Rockford schools
- Byron native selected as Sailor of the Year for Navy Band Southwest
- Illinois Tollway awards $337 million in contracts, sets budget
- 44 earn bachelor’s degrees at Saint Anthony College of Nursing
- Goodwill opens Donation Express site on Perryville
- Rock Valley College to manage TechWorks program
- University of Illinois at Chicago names chancellor
- Salvation Army to distribute food, toys to nearly 2,000 families
- American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act signed into law
Hockey: IceHogs could look to the past for future coach
By Doug Halberstadt
At press time, the Rockford IceHogs are in the market for a new head coach. Last week, it was announced Bill Peters, their head coach for the last three years, would be leaving for an assistant coaching job with the Detroit Red Wings.
Peters has some brief experience with Red Wings Head Coach Mike Babcock — he spent a year-and-a-half with Babcock during Babcock’s run as head coach of the WHL’s Spokane team.
Instead of a new head coach, I’d like to suggest the team look at an old head coach. Actually, a former head coach would be a much more accurate term. I think the team should give a call to one-time IceHogs Head Coach Steve Martinson.
In 15 seasons as a head coach, Martinson has never missed the postseason. His teams have taken advantage of their playoff opportunities, winning six championships.
In 2007, Martinson brought one of those championships to northern Illinois when his Rockford IceHogs won the UHL’s Colonial Cup in the league’s final season. Rockford defeated the Kalamazoo Wings in seven games. In his three seasons as the ’Hogs’ boss, his teams finished with no worse than a .631 winning percentage. His record speaks for itself.
He was always a fan favorite during his time here in the River City. Are you listening, Mark Bernard (general manager of Minor League Affiliations for the Chicago Blackhawks)? Call him; what have you got to lose?
Martinson was picked to be the head coach of the new ECHL Chicago Express. They are slated to begin play at the Sears Center Arena this fall. I think with the right presentation, he could be talked out of that position and coaxed back to where he rightfully belongs, here on the bench in Rockford, as the boss of the ’Hogs.
It’s at least worth a (slap) shot! Don’t you agree?
Doug Halberstadt can be reached via e-mail at Dougster61@aol.com.
From the July 13-19, 2011 issue