Beavers renew Brick contract

April 19, 2022

The most successful coach and general manager in the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League history of the Blind River Beavers has had his contract extended for another three years.

Kyle Brick joined the Beavers in 2016 and immediately turned around an NOJHL franchise that had gone through five straight losing seasons, winning only 41 games in the process. Brick piloted the Beavers to a record of 32-20-4 in his first season on the job and Blind River has carried on with a winning formula ever since as a model small market franchise.

Blind River began play in the NOJHL as the Beavers in 2001. And besides Brick, only two other coaches — Jim Capy and Todd Stencill — had winning seasons in Blind River.

Including the abbreviated 2020-2021 regular season in which Blind River played just 21 cohort games relative to the ‘vid, Brick has coached the Beavers to a record of 161-106-26 while also establishing himself as one of the best general managers in the Canadian Jr. A Hockey League.

Before signing on with the Beavers in 2016, Brick was an assistant coach with the Soo Thunderbirds of the NOJHL and prior to that, he coached the St. Mary’s Knights of the Sault Ste. Marie High School Hockey League.

Beavers president Robert Morningstar confirmed the three-year contract extension that Brick has agreed to in remaining at the helm of the Blind River hockey department.

“It is with great pleasure that the Blind River Beavers confirm that Mr. Brick has decided to continue his service in developing our local junior A hockey club for an additional three years,” Morningstar told Hockey News North.

As for the 36-year old Brick, who is originally from Thessalon — a small town located off of Highway 17 between Blind River and Sault Ste. Marie — he told Hockey News North that his first choice was always to remain with the Beavers.

“At the end of the day, this is where I wanted to stay. I am excited to continue to build on the program that we have here in Blind River,” said Brick, who led the Beavers to a regular season record of 25-17-6 in 2021-2022. Blind River then upended its arch-rival Elliot Lake Red Wings in the preliminary round of this spring’s NOJHL West Division playoffs before losing to the no. 1 seed Soo Thunderbirds in the semi-finals.

“It has been tougher to recruit here the past last couple of years because of Covid and all of that but we still managed to do okay. Having said that, we hold our program to a higher standard here in Blind River and we want to win. The community deserves a winner and that is what we will continue to strive to do,” noted Brick.

Brick added that he is thankful to the Beavers board of directors for their faith and the contract renewal and added that he hopes his staff of assistant coaches that includes Jamie Disano, Dylan King and Craig MacDonald will return next season.

“We may also add on to our staff,” Brick concluded.

Photo: Kyle Brick (right) and his trusted assistant, Craig MacDonald.

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