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Canadian WJC Coach Sets Tone Early, Pulls Two Key Players off Ice

Canadian World Junior coach Andre Tourigny took two players aside at practice today and had them set an embarrassing example for the others.

Let’s note two things before we get into the following story. One, the mentality of, ‘If you’re not early you’re late’ probably applies. Two, this story is not to suggest either Kriby Dach or Dylan Cozens are in hot water with the coach, their teammates or the World Juniors team for being right on time without a second to spare for today’s practice.

Related: Detroit Red Wings Refuse to Release Moritz Seider For WJC

TSN’s Ryan Rishaug is covering the World Junior Championships closely and was at practice today as players took the ice. Kirby Dach of the Chicago Blackhawks and Dylan Cozens of the Buffalo Sabres organization did not end up skating with their group this morning. Both showed up exactly at 11:30am for an 11:30am practice and coach Andre Tourigny had already gathered the group to get started by that point.

Seeing as how the two players weren’t able to huddle up with the others on time, he pulled both players aside, had a chat and gave them the opportunity to set an example for the rest of the group.

While we don’t know the exact words said by the coach, Rishaug notes that the gist of the conversation was that these two players had an opportunity to set the tone for camp and practices. He could either bend the rules and let them onto the ice, or they could take the punishment and sit in the stands during practice to watch. They elected to take the hit, sit and watch and the meeting ended as the coach fist bumped both, and told them to leave.

Coach Set the Tone Right Out of the Gate

At the end of the skate, Tourigny gathered the group together and filled them in on what was decided between he, Dach and Cozens and that he gave them the choice. He told the entire group that their decision to sit showed how much they care that things are done properly, on time and that everyone takes responsibility. They thought team first over their own individual well-being after not being on time and ready to go.

It was a tough and embarrassing lesson for two players to learn, but the coach has now set the tone early, didn’t throw either player under the bus and the group knows what’s expected of them.

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