Breaking Barriers: Seattle Kraken Hire First Female Assistant Coach in NHL

New Seattle Kraken assistant coach Jessica Campbell
Kraken Canada via X

The Seattle Kraken is making waves throughout the NHL by announcing Jessica Campbell as the new assistant coach to work alongside head coach Dan Bylsma and the rest of the Kraken coaching staff. This move will go down in history as it makes Campbell the first full-time female assistant coach in the NHL—just two years after she was the first female to land a full-time assistant role in the AHL.

This move is no surprise to many. Before Bylsma was hired as head coach for Seattle Kraken earlier this postseason, he and Campbell worked closely together as coaching staff for the AHL affiliate team, Coachella Valley Firebirds, since their inaugural 2022-23 season. Through the past two seasons, Bylsma and Campbell have worked to land the team a spot in the Calder Cup Playoffs both years and will now be looking to land the Kraken a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

 “I’m confident of what she can do for our staff and bring to the players,” said Bylsma. “She has the ability to relate to players about their games and what they bring to a team. She’s demonstrated that over the last two seasons, not just with Tye Kartye and others, but [veteran leaders] John Hayden and Max McCormick, among others. That’s why she is such an appealing candidate and why she’s joining our staff.”

Campbell, 32, was a former forward with the Canadian Women’s national team and made her debut at the 2014 4 Nations Cup. A year later, in 2015, her team won a silver medal at the IIHF Women’s World Championship. In 2017, Campbell retired from playing and used her expertise to open her own coaching business, JC Powerskating, where she worked with athletes such as Stanley Cup champion Joel Edmundson and Olympic gold medalist Natalie Spooner.

Jessica Campbell, Coachella Valley Firebirds assistant coach quote
NHLPA via X

During their 2023-244 season, the Kraken struggled most with their offense play, so having Campbell on the coaching staff – an experienced forward with strong player relationships – will likely prove to be beneficial. Going into the 2024-25 season, the Seattle Kraken have a lot to work on and will now be doing so under a new head and assistant coach. This transition is easy because many of the players have already worked under Bylsma and Campbell with the Firebirds. One thing Bylsma says will be helpful is the familiarity of coaching styles.

The Kraken have also hired Bob Woods as an assistant to Bylsma. Woods was previously an assistant with the Minnesota Wild. Dave Lowry (assistant coach) and Steve Briere (goaltending coach) will also be a part of the coaching staff with the Seattle Kraken.

We Got The Jack Inside The Rink

In episode 8 of the Inside The Rink podcast, Matty and Smitty are joined by new co-host Conrad Jack. After the long hiatus, we get back to hockey with a PACKED episode!Matt Rempe & the Devils vs. Rangers Line BrawlCould the Vancouver Canucks squander a playoff opportunity? Have the Winnipeg Jets finally figured out their lines?Flyers Head Coach John Tortorella is a sound byte MACHINEOvechkin is on his way to 895, Who is next?McDavid joins elite company with 100 Assists in a seasonRyan Hartman was suspended 3 Games, was it worth 3 games??Can Auston Matthews hit 70 Goals this season?The Eastern Conference Wild Card race is heating up, who lands the two playoff berths?For all of your hockey news and more from the show, visit us at insidetherink.com and watch us on YouTube! How to support us and our sponsors:TicketmasterColumbia Sports ApparelESPN+ SubscriptionFanaticsDraft Kings – CODE ITR
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