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NHL assistant coach finds time on ice after winning title

  • Chicago Blackhawks assistant coach Jamie Kampon, right, tries to get control of the puck while playing in Snoopy's 38th Annual Senior World Hockey Tournament in Santa Rosa on Wednesday, July 17, 2013. (Conner Jay/The Press Democrat)

For offseason relaxation, what does a Stanley Cup winning assistant coach do? He plays hockey.

Little more than a week after returning home following the Chicago Blackhawks' title run, Jamie Kompon was back on the road to play hockey, in Santa Rosa. He is one of many Canadians on the Red Barn Ice Dogs, a top draw at Snoopy's 38th Annual Senior World Hockey Tournament.

"Hockey is a release for me. It's just a fun way to compete in a different setting," Kompon said. "The fans are great. Anytime someone comes out to watch you play other than the Zamboni driver gets you going."

NHL'S Jamie Kompon

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Playing in the event's top division, the Ice Dogs, out of Long Beach, are among more than 60 teams playing over nine days at Redwood Empire Ice Arena. Games continue into Sunday morning.

The event brings together teams that mostly play pickup hockey year-round and occasional tournaments. Players range in age from 40 into their 70s.

"It's a competitive tournament, but there's a lot of camaraderie," said Mike Kovanis, the ice arena's hockey director.

Former college and the occasional professional players fill rosters of featured squads in the most competitive divisions.

"The hockey's great. There are some elite players," Kompon said.

Fitting the profile is Kompon with one notable difference — he has been a part of the past two Stanley Cup-winning teams.

"I'm very fortunate to have been in the right spot at the right time," he said.


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