Cornwall Ontario – Olivier Filion is ready for the next challenge in his hockey career. Filion, who suited up for Cornwall at the beginning of last season, has been named the River Kings head coach.
“I don’t think I could start a coaching career in a better place,” said the 31-year-old Filion. “Cornwall is a hockey town with great fans that will be there game after game to cheer you on and we have an owner who wants to do everything to build a championship team for this city,” he said.
Filion, who lives in Saint-Sauveur, Que., is eager to work alongside in general manager Rick Lalonde and his assistant Al Wagar. “With all the experience they bring, it makes this the perfect place for me,” he said.
A few seasons ago, Filion served as a player/coach with the Missouri Mavericks of the CHL. Cornwall native Roch Seguin has been named his assistant coach.
Filion’s playing career began in the QMJHL with Acadie-Bathurst, where he played alongside current NHL’ers Patrice Bergeron and Francois Beauchemin. Filion led the Titan in scoring in each of his final two seasons– with back-to-back 104 point seasons. He went on to play in the UHL, ECHL, CHL and also had a stop overseas in France.
Last season, Filion split his time in the LNAH between Cornwall and Laval, scoring 29 points in 31 games. He is excited to make the transition from player to coach. “After playing in this league for the last three years, I know what the players want and expect from a coach,” he said.
Filionhas had the pleasure of playing for great bench bosses, including Real Paiment (QMJHL) and Davis Payne (ECHL). For that reason, he knew he too would one day become a head coach. “They taught me the game very well and I will bring all the tools I learned from them in my coaching,” said Filion.
Preparation and a good team system will be keys to making this season a success according to Filion, who will ensure the River Kings are a hard team to play against.
“Fans can expect a high tempo game with a lot of energy will make this team fun to watch,” said Filion. “No team will come to our rink and run the show – we will.”