By MIKE ASHMORE
Special to ECHL.com
BOSTON — Two for two. Any way you slice it — whether it’s the two goals that sent Chicago Blackhawks assistant coach Jamie Kompon to his second Stanley Cup win or that this is the second straight year he’s been able to hoist the game’s biggest prize over his head — the former ECHL player sure isn’t doing too bad for himself these days.
"It’s special, real special," Kompon told ECHL.com on the ice after his team’s dramatic Game 6 victory.
"It’s especially special for (fellow assistant) Mike Kitchen and Joel Quenneville. Joel hired me back in ’97 with the St. Louis Blues, my first hire, and it’s real special to be back together with Joel and Kitch again. Just to do it again, it’s an unbelievable feeling. Words can’t describe it."
The 46-year-old played for the Hampton Roads Admirals, Cincinnati Cyclones and Winston-Salem Thunderbirds during a brief professional career before beginning his transition to the coaching ranks. Kompon, who was a member of the Los Angeles Kings organization for six seasons, knew that he had a chance to get his name engraved on Lord Stanley one more time when he reunited with Kitchen and Quenneville.
"That was our goal, that’s every team’s goal," he said. "Then you start rolling, and it starts happening and the wheels just keep going. The resilience of our group was unbelievable, it was phenomenal. Any time that they thought we were out, we never were out. We were always win in play, and tonight just showed the heart and determination of our team."
But Kompon’s own journey is one of resiliency, heart and determination as well. And he couldn’t help but reflect on his time not only in the ECHL, but every stop along the way that got him to this point one more time.
"People think I’m crazy, but before every game, I always think about the people that helped me along the way to get me to where I am today," he said.
"I always believe that, in some way, people have touched me and helped me get to where I am. I kind of reflect on that before that before every game and basically give thanks to them, because I wouldn’t be there without them."