By Don Stewart
READING, Pa. – Jason Nobili spent most of the summer recruiting this year’s Reading Royals team, but his biggest “get” might have come well into the season.
After a game in mid-November, Nobili met Larry Courville, who happened to be in attendance that night. The former Royals captain offered to help out here and there if Nobili needed it. Nobili took that offer and began working on making Courville his assistant coach.
After a two-week feeling-out process, the Royals officially hired Courville Dec. 5. It’s been a perfect fit thus far.
“It’s been good; it’s been really good,” said the 33-year-old Courville, who skated for the Royals in five different seasons. “For me, it’s not work when you’re involved with hockey. You can be here for hours and it’s not really work. It’s just something you enjoy.”
“Don’t tell our wives that,” Nobili added with a smile.
Courville officially retired following the 2005-06 season after 14 years as a pro, which included 33 NHL games with Vancouver. The Royals offered him the assistant coaching position, but with his first child on the way, Courville opted to take a position with the Lancaster Ice Rink instead.
“Unfortunately at that time I turned it down,” he said, “which I regretted for the last couple years.”