Defenseman John-Michael Liles announced that he’ll be the latest locked-out NHL player to give coaching a try.
The scoring blueliner revealed that he’ll be a bench boss for a prep high school team in Culver, Indiana via Twitter today.
(This is about the time when Liles’ critics might make a crack about learning how to play defense. Get it out of the way now if needed.)
Liles played for Culver way back in 1995-96 and 96-97, according to this Legends of Hockey bio.
The defenseman is the latest in a growing line of skaters who will kill time by getting a different vantage point of the game. R.J. Umberger and Ryan O’Byrne are also going to help teams in a similar capacity during the work stoppage.
While it’s not the same as staying in game shape, these players are staying involved with the sport (and maybe even planting seeds for what life will be like after their NHL days are over).
This measure might also reduce the odds of injury compared to playing at the professional level, although experiences such as Lindy Ruff’s indicate that there may still be some risk involved.