Barry Douglas can breathe a silent sigh of relief knowing that he’s landed safely in a place that he’s very familiar with.
At Wednesday’s introductory press conference, Chilliwack Chiefs co-owner Moray Keith officially announced Douglas as the first hire for the junior A club.
Title to be determined.
“This team is in my blood and always has been,” Douglas said with a smile. “It was always first on our list to be back here. I’d been around the Chiefs for so long, it was a no-brainer that if we could make it work we would.”
Douglas was caught square in the middle of the messy Bruins situation, working closely with Bruins president Darryl Porter, not the most popular guy in town.
It may have crossed his mind at some point that being linked with Porter wasn’t good for future hockey employment in Chilliwack. But in the end, he believed his track record would speak for itself.
“I have a very good history with his ownership group and I was with the Chiefs before the WHL ever came here,” Douglas said. “They (Keith, Jim Bond and Harvey Smyl) know what I can do and I’m very happy to be involved again.”
Douglas is likely to be leading the marketing charge, trying to get locals excited about the BCHL after five years of major junior.
“I don’t look at it as one versus the other, I look at it as selling quality hockey,” he said. “Back in the day, the Chiefs were like a best friend, always there for you. They owned the community and the community owned them. They didn’t win a championship every year, but you came to the rink every night knowing it was going to be good hockey and good fun.”