The best team in the Central Canada Hockey League from the 2019-2020 season has added a crackerjack coach to its staff.
Hockey News North has confirmed that Marc Lafleur has joined the staff of the Carleton Place Canadians as an assistant coach under owner, general manager and head coach Jason Clarke.
The 45-year old Lafleur and the Hearst Lumberjacks recently parted ways, just over a year after he led what was a second-year franchise to the 2018-2019 Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League championship.
Lafleur, who is a Hearst product, also had prior championship success as an NOJHL coach and general manager with the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners.
A teacher by trade with a master’s degree in education, Lafleur also coached in the Quebec Major Jr. Hockey League, as an assistant with the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies. And he played the game at the Division 1, American college level at Bemidji State University.
Known as a brilliant tactician with a tireless work ethic and a reputation for paying attention to the smallest detail, Lafleur departed Hearst and the NOJHL to be with his wife and their two kids, who live in Almonte, Ontario, which is just outside Ottawa. Lafleur’s wife and her family have roots in the Almonte area.
Clarke, as the owner, GM and coach in Carleton Place, called the addition of Lafleur “a great hire” for the Canadians, who topped the CCHL standings in 2019-2020 with 104 points from a scintillating record of 49-7-6.
“Marc is a great coach,” added Clarke, noting that he and Lafleur have known each other for a long time. Clarke said that Lafleur agreed to a one-year contract to be a full-time assistant with Carleton Place.
Under Clarke, Carleton Place won four CCHL championships in the six seasons prior to the 2019-2020 campaign, which, like all junior hockey leagues across the country, was forced to end play in March because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Carleton Place is just west of Ottawa and the Canadians are one of 12 teams in the CCHL.