Remo assists the Attack

January 21, 2015

He had once hoped to tend goal beyond the junior level, perhaps at a Canadian or American university.

But a groin injury that he suffered while playing for the Soo Thunderbirds of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League never fully healed so Remo Febbraro stepped away from the game as a 20-year old.

And while Febbraro no longer tends twine on a competitive basis, he is back in the junior game as a 23-year old assistant coach with the Batchewana Attack of the first-year Canadian International Hockey.

Febbraro can hardly contain himself when discussing the experience of being a young coach.

“I am liking every minute of this,” he exclaimed on a recent edition of the Hockey North Show, which airs on Wednesdays at 5 p.m. on Sault Ste. Marie radio station ESPN 1400. “I had never given much thought to coaching but this is something that I am thoroughly enjoying.”

Febbraro said the opportunity to learn the coaching side of the game from the reputable, respectable Denny Lambert “has been an unbelievable experience.

“Not only is Denny a great guy who has played in the National Hockey League and coached and played with the Soo Greyhounds (of the Ontario Hockey League) but he has become my mentor,” Febbraro related. “Denny knows so much about hockey — his practices are something else — and I know that I speak for every one associated with the team when I say we are fortunate to have him as our leader.”

Lambert, as the experienced, undisputed bench boss of the Attack, makes sure that he includes his assistants when making decisions, said Febbraro.

“Denny is always asking me and (assistant coach) Trevor (Solomon) for our input,” noted Febbraro. “He makes sure that we are heard and that what we have to say is considered.”

Lambert, from his end, said Febbraro is “a major asset to our program.

“He is dependable and committed and he works hard,” praised Lambert. “Remo is eager to learn the coaching side of the game and uses his knowledge in a positive way. The players really like him and respect him for what he does.”

Being an assistant with Batchewana has filled a hockey void for Febbraro, who prior to playing two NOJHL seasons with the Thunderbirds backstopped the St. Mary’s Knights to city, northern Ontario and all-Ontario championships in 2010.

“At first, when I stopped playing, I didn’t really want to stay involved,” said Febbraro. “Hockey had become like a job. But now, working and learning under Denny has really made me appreciate and respect the game again.”

As a first-year league, the CIHL has experienced its share of growing pains. But under relentless CIHL founder and president Tim Clayden, the league has pressed on with the first-place Attack serving as a model franchise.

Despite setbacks here and there, Febbraro likes being a part of the CIHL and sees a good future for it.

“I see the league going forward in a positive direction and I want to remain a part of it with the Attack,” Febbraro continued. “There are a lot of good players in our league and there are a number of guys on our team who we have no doubt will develop and move on to play either at the American Collegiate Hockey Association, the National Collegiate Athletic Association or the OHL level.”

Febbraro, who studies marketing and business on-line, is of the notion that the Attack is every bit as good a team as the first-place Thunderbirds of the NOJHL.

“If we ever played them, it would be a very-close game,” Febbraro said evenly. “I think that we are just as good as they are.”

PHOTO: Remo Febbraro, while appearing on the Hockey North Show on ESPN 1400 Radio. (Photo by Theresa Desimone Leask.)

What you think about “Remo assists the Attack”

  1. Very strong statement saying that the Attack would give the T Birds a good go. I agree with it,just good to hear from a good hockey guy.

  2. Having watched both teams, I would say the Attack are a good farm team to the Thunderbirds. The Attack could really use some good competition to play rather than the Royals and Espanola. The T-Birds would do well to recruit from the Attack for next year as there are a couple of players who might be ready.

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