Nanaimo Clippers coach Mike Vandekamp

Clippers add to coaching staff

The Nanaimo Clippers announced Blake Clement as the new assistant coach and Clayton Smith as the new strength and conditioning coach.

The Nanaimo Clippers are going to have a bunch of energetic players skating into training camp next week, and the team has added new energy behind the bench, too.

The city’s junior hockey club announced Blake Clement as the new assistant coach and Clayton Smith as the new strength and conditioning coach.

Clement played junior A in Grande Prairie under head coach Mike Vandekamp, who is now coach and general manager of the Clippers.

“We agreed on a lot of things, so I think that transition’s going to be really easy in that way, because we see the game in the same way,” Clement said.

The new assistant doesn’t have coaching experience, but Vandekamp said the junior A level is about building experience.

“He’s a real passionate, hard-working young man and I think that example he’s going to set for our players will be fantastic,” the head coach said.

Clement said coaching will probably be more stressful than playing.

“You can’t go on the ice and do anything about it and I’m sure sometimes I’m going to want to jump over the bench and get on the ice,” he said. “It’ll be weird at first, but I’m sure it will be fine. I have the passion. I care about the game and love the game so it’ll be a pretty easy transition.”

Smith operates Prime Sport Performance and Kinesiology and is a former Clippers defenceman.

“It’s nice to be back, and that was one thing that really drove me to help out with the Clippers organization, is to give back to a program that’s given me so much,” Smith said.

Vandekamp said Smith’s business has gained a positive reputation in the area.

“For him to come into our program and work regularly with our players is going to be a huge advantage for our team and our players are going to be in top condition, we know that, and that’s really important to us.”

ICE CHIPS … The Clippers begin training camp with off-ice fitness testing Monday (Sept. 1) and start skating the next day at Frank Crane Arena … For season ticket information, please click here.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Deborah Saucier, Vancouver Island University president and vice-chancellor, was among the panelists in the Future of Post-Secondary Education discussion at the State of the Island Economic Summit on Oct. 28. (VIEA YouTube screenshot)
Island’s universities challenged to ‘build community’ amid remote learning

VIU, UVic and Royal Roads University admin discuss COVID-19 impact at economic summit

John Albert Buchanan, accused in the September 2017 murder of Richard Sitar in Nanaimo, is currently standing trial in B.C. Supreme Court in Nanaimo. (News Bulletin file)
Man accused in Nanaimo beating death told police he didn’t hurt victim

Arresting officer takes the stand in John Albert Buchanan’s second-degree murder trial

MNP senior economist Susan Mowbray presents the State of the Island Economic Report on Thursday night to conclude the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance’s virtual summit. (VIEA image)
Not-so-rosy State of the Island report caps off virtual summit

Vancouver Island Economic Alliance’s summit took place online Oct. 27-29

Canadian Federation of University Women Nanaimo members Wendy Smiley, left, Karen Skarpnes, storyteller Margaret Murphy, CFUW-Nanaimo president Jeri Manley and club treasurer Kathy Torhjelm gather in recognition of the club’s 75th anniversary. (Photo submitted)
Nanaimo chapter of Canadian Federation of University Women celebrates 75th anniversary

Group gathered via Zoom earlier this month to recall its history in the area

Physical distancing signs are a common sight in B.C. stores and businesses. THE CANADIAN PRESS
272 more COVID-19 cases for B.C., outbreak at oil sands project

Three new health care outbreaks, three declared over

This house at 414 Royal Ave. became notorious for its residents’ and visitors’ penchant for attracting police. It was also the site of a gruesome torture in August 2018. It was demolished in 2019. KTW
6-year sentence for Kamloops man who helped carve ‘rat’ into flesh of fellow gang member

Ricky Dennis was one of three men involved in the August 2018 attack

Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP, giving an update on the investigation at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 30. Patrick Penner photo.
VIDEO: Prisoner convicted of first-degree murder still at large from Mission Institution

When 10 p.m. count was conducted, staff discovered Roderick Muchikekwanape had disappeared

Among the pumpkin carvings created this year by Rick Chong of Abbotsford is this tribute to fallen officer Cont. Allan Young.
Abbotsford pumpkin carver’s creations include fallen police officer

Rick Chong carves and displays 30 pumpkins every year

An online fundraising campaign in support of the six-year-old boy, Edgar Colby, who was hit by a car on Range Road Oct. 25 has raised more than $62,000 in a day. (Submitted)
$62K raised in 1 day for boy in coma at BC Children’s after being hit by vehicle in Yukon

The boy’s aunt says the family is “very grateful” for the support they’ve received from the community

Police service dog Herc helped RCMP locate and arrest suspects in the Ladysmith area on Oct. 23, 2020, related to a stolen vehicle. (Submitted)
RCMP nab prolific property offender in Ladysmith with assist from police dog Herc

Police attempted to stop the vehicle but it fled from the area towards Chemainus.

Health care employees take extensive precautions when working with people infected or suspected of having COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
WorkSafeBC disallows majority of COVID-19 job injury claims

Health care, social services employees filing the most claims

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole rises during Question Period in the House of Commons in Ottawa on Wednesday October 28, 2020. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)
Conversion therapy ban gets approval in principle, exposes Conservative divisions

Erin O’Toole himself voted in favour of the bill, as did most Conservative MPs

CBSA. (Black Press Media File)
4 sentenced in B.C. steroid smuggling, distribution ring that spilled into U.S.

Canadian Border Services Agency announced the results of a lengthy investigation it called ‘Project Trajectory’

Most Read