Ted Nolan’s career in hockey has spanned 46 years. Now, he’s using his talents to coach kids who look up to him, who want to be him.
“Being coached by a coach that coached in the NHL, and his sons, it’s amazing,” said player Averee Sault.
Nolan was the NHL’s coach of the year in 1997. His two sons followed in his footsteps: Brandon Nolan played for the Carolina Hurricanes, and Jordan Nolan is a three-time Stanley Cup champion.
The hockey dynasty launched the 3 Nolans, a hockey skills development camp for First Nations youth, in 2013.
“Reserves that are close to cities, reserves that are fly-in communities … we get there and we do a three-day hockey program,” Brandon Nolan told CTV News.
The camp features top hockey prospects, and Ted Nolan said a triple-A tournament gives these 14- and 15-year-old NHL hopefuls a chance to learn how to make it to the big leagues.
“They get to see what kind of competition is out there,” Ted Nolan told CTV News at a tournament he coached over the weekend in Vaughn, Ont. “And give them a little bit of insight on what it’s going to take to get to the next level.”
But the education goes beyond just hockey, the Nolans said. The camp also teaches these teenagers the game of life, leadership, and control both on and off the ice.
“Keep your composure and learn from your defeats,” said Ethan Makokis, a young player who travelled from Alberta to be on the team.
The players receive encouragement from both the Nolan family, as well as from their own.
“I’m pretty proud, you know, for my son to have this opportunity,” Wanita Jones, the mother of one of the players, told CTV News.