By: Daniel Vazzoler
The Carleton Place Canadians announce Adam Lloyd and Devin Campbell as assistant coaches on Brent Sullivan’s staff.
The pair of Canadians alumni join the coaching staff with championship pedigree from their time in Carleton Place – both being members of the first two Bogart Cup winning and then-RBC Cup finalist teams.
“What I was looking for was people with some playing experience,” Sullivan said about hiring his new assistants, “but I did think it was an important factor to be able to look through some guys who have been part of the program [and] see what it’s like to be a Carleton Place Canadian on a day-to-day basis.”
For Lloyd, he said the emotions of coming so close to a national championship twice came rushing over him when Sullivan offered him the position.
“It was definitely something that really piqued my interest. [Carleton Place is] a town that’s given me so much, and the players and coaches that have given me two of the best years of hockey I’ve ever had, I wanted to be able to pay something back to the next Canadians moving forward.”
Campbell said he and Lloyd don’t want to put the pressure of them coming so close onto the team, but added that sparked a fire in them to join the staff.
“We know what it takes to get there, too, so we’re hoping to be able to pass it on to these guys and hopefully we’ll reach the promised land,” he continued. “It hasn’t been done yet, so it would be really cool to get it done with this group.”
Campbell said he had an interest in getting into coaching once his playing career ended following his senior year with the Oswego State Lakers in 2018-’19. After spending last season with the Renfrew Wolves U18 team as a coach, getting the call from Sullivan left Campbell with “a loss for words” as he wasn’t sure if the opportunity to coach his junior team was a possibility.
“CP will always hold a special place in my heart, I was there from 16 [years old] to 20. To come back and be a coach, I had a real good ‘D’ coach when I was there in Shawn Cation, so to follow in his foot steps a little bit is pretty cool,” he said.
Sullivan said in his introduction that continuing the Canadians culture is an important thing for him, and both Campbell and Lloyd agree with that and say they hope to contribute to that task.
“I hope [the players] understand how big of a deal it is that they’re playing there,” said Campbell. “Even if they didn’t grow up in the area […] I want them to understand how cool of an opportunity it is to play in Carleton Place. There are very few junior organizations that are run the way Carleton Place is.”
“I think I can offer a view of how I’ve gone through this,” Lloyd added. “I think it’s going to be easy for me to relate to players and be someone who understands what they’re going through. I’ve been through it, ‘Soupy’ has been through it and we know that the reputation of this team isn’t going anywhere. It’s something that we definitely want to keep pushing and keep the CPC name at the top of the leaderboards.”
On top of being parts of two championship teams in Carleton Place, Sullivan said the careers Lloyd and Campbell had post-Canadians played a role in bringing them in. Lloyd, having gone to the OHL before joining the Canadians, and Campbell, going the NCAA route, provide the experience and perspective players may be looking for when choosing their path.
“I wanted to bring in people that, right away, were able to relate to the guys,” Sullivan said. “When the guys have questions, they can look [the players] in the eyes and can say ‘I know exactly what you’re going through.’ I wanted the assistant coaches to be able to build on that relationship with the players, be able to communicate with them and relate to them on a day-to-day basis.
“There’s no better way of doing that than bringing in guys who have been part of championship runs in Carleton Place to tell guys what it’s like to be on this team, in this program, when it’s a winner.”