Jeremy Colliton might not have been the best NHL player to ever lace up the skates in the NHL, but for the Chicago Blackhawks, he is the coach that finds himself behind the bench.
Jeremy Colliton is nine years removed from playing in his last NHL game as a player. He is one of the youngest coaches in hockey right now, and highlight his playing career is essential to understand what kind of coach he is.
Colliton is a great communicator with his players. He does a great job putting himself in his players’ shoes and realizing what they need to compete. Colliton might have some of these good qualities in large part because he is not so removed from playing.
Jeremy Colliton is only 35 years old. Colliton was drafted to the New York Islanders in the second round of the 2003 NHL draft. The former forward had some high hopes on an NHL career when he put up over 30 points in the WHL every season.
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Colliton eventually received some opportunities in the NHL during the 2005-06 season when he played in 19 games with the Islanders. Colliton registered a goal and an assist during that time. At just 21 years old at the time, it looked like he would get a lot more opportunities with the Islanders, but that ended up not being the case.
The following year Colliton would only get in one game with the Islanders, followed by 16 the next season. Eventually, it just became apparent that Colliton was not going to become an NHL player. He instead spent a lot of time in the AHL trying to improve his game and work up to the NHL level.
He also spent a season in the Swedish Hockey League playing for the Rogle BK Angelholm. During his time in the Swedish league, the Blackhawks were going out to win their first Stanley Cup with Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews.
When you compare the resumes of some of the Blackhawks on this roster right now with a guy like Jeremy Colliton, those players that have been around since 2008 are going to look better. However, I have to hand it to Jeremy Colliton for coming into this organization and doing his best to get these veterans on board.
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Only time will tell whether or not Colliton will be the coach of the Blackhawks for the next few seasons. While many people would rather see someone else behind the bench, I believe the play of the Blackhawks this season will determine whether or not Colliton and Bowman stay.