SHL Digest: This week, the Boston Badgers named their first-ever coach, Cam Prince. And we have the honor of being the first to interview him. Cam, thanks for speaking with us.
Cam Prince: I’m glad to be here! This is an exciting day for me.
SHLD: This is your first head coaching job. How does it feel to be getting your first shot with a brand-new team?
CP: It’s a very cool opportunity, to tell you the truth. It’s a total blank canvas here. I’m so excited to be working with [GM] Jody Melchiorre to build this team from the ground up.
SHLD: What convinced you to take this job?
CP: A number of things. I really like the opportunity to grow together with the team. And I think Boston is just a tremendous hockey team. So many diehard fans here. Finding a way to win them over to the Badgers is going to be a lot of fun.
SHLD: Jody has said that he wants to build a scrappy, hard-working, defense-first team. Meanwhile, you were an assistant coach for New York, which is a very offense-oriented team. Are you prepared to coach a team full of grinders?
CP: Oh, absolutely. My time with the Night definitely showed the limitations of an offense-only approach. And as an expansion team, it’s generally easier to put together a scrappy team rather than a squad of elite scorers.
SHLD: Speaking of your time with New York: Do you think that was a factor in your being selected as coach? Kind of trying to get started on the Boston-New York rivalry?
CP: I don’t think so. I mean, that might have been one reason they interviewed me. But it’s not like the Night fans have a lot of memories of me, or are going to have a grudge against me. I mean, Preston Rivers, sure. But I wasn’t as memorable as him.
SHLD: What about on your end? Do you have a personal rivalry with the Night?
CP: There’s no love lost there, I can promise that. I’ll definitely be fired up to coach against them. And if we can finish ahead of them in the standings, that will be a successful season in my book.
SHLD: So far, you have a grand total of one player: Cary Estabrook. Have you met him yet?
CP: (laughs) Not yet. I talked to him on the phone this morning. I told him I was looking forward to meeting the team. He said, “Well, you just did.”
SHLD: Care to make any predictions about how your first season will go?
CP: Before I even have players? Sure, we’re going to win the Vandy! (laughs) Seriously, with the [expansion draft] protection rules, I think we’ll have a chance to put together a solid team. Are we going to make the playoff right out of the box? I wouldn’t think so. But we should be able to re respectable, at least. And like I said, if we can beat New York, that will be a win for me.
SHLD: Well, we should let you get back to building your team. Congratulations, and good luck next season!
CP: Thanks! I can’t wait to get started.