Canucks: Jennifer Botterill leads an impressive pool of potential front office candidates

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“I’m looking for different voices, people who come from kids hockey or the hockey system or who do it in a different way.” – Canucks President Jim Rutherford

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“Elasticity. Adapting to change. Teamwork. Sustainable excellence.

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These four sentences greet you when you land on Jennifer Botterill’s website. The former Olympian – she won gold three times with Canada’s National Women’s Team – turned Hockey Night in Canada analyst has also worked as a business and performance coach and as a motivational speaker.

She is the only two-time winner of the Patty Kazmaier Award, which annually recognizes the best female college hockey player in the United States.


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Botterill received an Honors BA in Psychology from Harvard. And she earned praise for her analysis for HNIC and Sportsnet.

There is a solid pedigree here for a potential addition to an NHL front office. And several reports in recent days have suggested she was in the sights of the Vancouver Canucks.

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Broadcaster Jennifer Botterill reports during the NHL game between the Arizona Coyotes and the Minnesota Wild at Gila River Arena on November 10, 2021 in Glendale, Arizona.
Broadcaster Jennifer Botterill reports during the NHL game between the Arizona Coyotes and the Minnesota Wild at Gila River Arena on November 10, 2021 in Glendale, Arizona. Photo by Christian Petersen /PNG

From the moment he first spoke to the media last week, new Canucks president Jim Rutherford made it clear that he would like to find a quirky face to add to his front office.

During his introductory press conference last Monday, Rutherford agreed with the premise that hockey has leaned too long on just hiring the same old faces over and over again.

“Our society is changing all the time. And I would like to see a more diverse staff, if possible, ”said Rutherford.

And he explained mid-week, telling Postmedia, “I’m looking for different voices, people who come from kids hockey or the hockey system or who do it in a different way.

Botterill, one of the most decorated female hockey players of all time, well educated and with a wide variety of life experiences behind her, would seem to do the trick.

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A Globe and Mail article published this weekend suggests Botterill is at the top of Rutherford’s list. When the report was discussed on the air on Saturday’s Hockey Night in Canada, Botterill refused to bite, simply mentioning the quality of the two other candidates mentioned in the report, Jayna Hefford and Angela Ruggiero.

Asked about Botterill on Sunday, Rutherford declined to comment on specific candidates.

“I don’t want to comment on potential new Canucks hires,” he told Postmedia. “I don’t think that’s of any use at this point.”


Other candidates

Here are some of the candidates who have been or should be considered for front office positions:

Jayna Hefford.
Jayna Hefford. Postmedia Thread

Jayna hefford

Another former Globe nominated player, Hefford is even more decorated than Botterill, a former teammate. She is a four-time gold medalist with Canada and a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame.

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She led the Canadian Women’s Hockey League for one season before her demise in 2019 and is currently President of the Professional Women’s Hockey Players Association.

Angela Ruggiero, member of the <a class=International Olympic Committee (IOC).” class=”embedded-image__image lazyload” src=”https://smartcdn.prod.postmedia.digital/theprovince/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/olympics-2022-biden-ruggiero.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=288″ srcset=”https://smartcdn.prod.postmedia.digital/theprovince/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/olympics-2022-biden-ruggiero.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=288, https://smartcdn.prod.postmedia.digital/theprovince/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/olympics-2022-biden-ruggiero.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=576 2x” height=”522″ loading=”lazy” width=”700″/>
Angela Ruggiero, member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC). Photo of DENIS BALIBOUSE /REUTERS

Angela Ruggiero

A gold medalist for the United States team at the inaugural women’s hockey competition at the 1998 Nagano Olympics, Ruggiero is the CEO and co-founder of Sports Innovation Lab, which their website says is helping some of the world’s biggest sports brands to collect and understand data. fans to help them make ‘data-driven strategic decisions’.

Another member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, she has also served on several boards of directors for major sports organizations, including the United States Olympic Committee, the International Olympic Committee, the International Ice Hockey Federation and was director of the strategy for the successful bid for the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics. A Botterill teammate at Harvard, she also won the Kazmaier Prize.

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Cammi Granato works as a scout for the Seattle Kraken.
Cammi Granato works as a scout for the Seattle Kraken. Photo by Bettina Hansen / Seattle Times /PNG

Cammi Granato

Captain of Ruggiero in 1998, Granato is well known to Vancouver hockey fans for his long-standing affiliation with the local hockey community. Since retiring as a player, she has been very involved in the development of grassroots women’s hockey and has run schools and hockey camps over the years.

His family has deep ties to American hockey; she was a superstar and her brothers, Tony and Don, had a long career as a player and coach in their own right. She worked as an analyst for NHL hockey shows and the NBC Olympics. Granato is married to former NHL star turned broadcaster Ray Ferraro.

A member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, she is currently a professional recruiter for the Seattle Kraken.

Angela James stands in the center of the ice in front of the Toronto Maple Leafs team after being inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Buffalo Sabers hockey action in Toronto on Saturday 6 November 2010.
Angela James stands in the center of the ice in front of the Toronto Maple Leafs team after being inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Buffalo Sabers hockey action in Toronto on Saturday 6 November 2010. Photo by Chris Young /The Canadian Press

Angela James

The first true female hockey superstar, James held several roles over the years, even before retiring. In addition to being a fantastic player, she has been a referee, coach and involved in local hockey.

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She is considered old school in her approach to the game, but a source described her as “a brilliant hockey person.”

Megan Chayka

CEO of Stathletes, a hockey-focused data company she co-founded with her brother John years before he became general manager of the Arizona Coyotes.

According to Chayka, the genesis of the business came from filming his brother’s games while he was still a junior, so they could see how he could improve his game.

Stathletes has worked with several teams and broadcasters and Chayka herself has been recognized as an entrepreneur, appearing on several lists of businessmen to watch. She is involved in the TD Data and Management Lab at the University of Toronto.

Rachel Doerrie

Still in his twenties, Doerrie worked in performance analysis for the Sudbury Wolves, Hockey Canada and the New Jersey Devils. She is currently Director of Advanced Performance for York University’s Athletics Department.

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