blank'/> THE PUCK REPORT: Terry Murray Interview - 2009 Hockey Fest

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Terry Murray Interview - 2009 Hockey Fest

Crossing paths with Kings coach Terry Murray at Hockey Fest '09, we took the opportunity to ask him about the career arc of his former goaltending tandem. These are his stories.

Q: For two seasons ('95-'96, '96-'97) you coached both Garth Snow and Ron Hextall in Philadelphia. Did you ever imagine that these hard-knuckled netminders would one day become potential employers?
A: It’s pretty interesting how it all unfolds. When you’re coaching teams you look at players and personalities and you’re often sitting down and having a beer with your GM and he's asking you about so and so. What do you think, is this guy a player that could work in the organization when he's done. Those conversations are always happening.

It’s important that you have like a minor league hockey system. You have to replenish. You've got scouts that move through the system and management that moves through. Time moves on and there has to be someone to step in and take over. I think when you look at Hextall in particular, you always had a feeling there would be something he'd do to stay involved post career. And here it is today and I’m working for him. It’s kind of interesting how it all plays out.

Q: How has Hextall channeled his on-ice intensity to the front office?
A: Well I think he’s handled the move with a great deal of control. I think the intensity is still there but as you mature you may put a little bit of a governor on some of that and then direct it in the right direction. Hex has done a great job. He’s very insightful and very thoughtful.

Q: Are you in touch with Garth Snow?
A: Yeah, I stop by and say hello as I do with all the players that I coached. It doesn’t surprise me that he's in the position he's in. It happened a lot quicker than I thought. From his playing days directly into that role was pretty incredible. It’s a big jump and I’m sure it was pretty intimidating for him. You know, he's a very intelligent guy. He's got a degree in sports management and that's the field he wanted to get into post career. Probably just happened a little faster than he thought.

Q: I’ve always heard Snow was popular with his teammates.
A: Yup. He was great in the locker room. He’s that chirper in the dressing room. He’s always rubbing guys. He's always got the quick line. He knows everything that's going on with every player on the team and he uses that to his advantage to really get some jabs in. He just kept everybody loose all the time. On the other side of it he’s competitive like Hex. He loved to battle and compete. Sometimes he even liked to drop his gloves and go at it like Hex did. I think he was a little bit better of a fighter than Hex was.

Q: What was Hextall like in the locker room?
A: He was very quiet, very intense. But when the time was right he was able to throw a few jabs and keep everybody loose.

Many thanks to Terry for speaking with us. Best of luck this season.