Glenn Littlejohn says he has encouraged the owners of the Western Kings to find common ground in their different views about the direction of the team and he’s confident they will get to that point.
The president of the provincial major midget hockey league has talked to the co-owners of the Kings — Craig Simms of Corner Brook and Jason Oake of Deer Lake — so he is fully abreast of the concerns both have about the future direction of the team.
“They’re working their way through it and, at this point, they haven’t come to a full agreement on how or where they should go, and hopefully it will get resolved very soon,” Littlejohn said Tuesday morning from Bay Roberts.
Head coach Mark Robinson and assistant coach Andre Cornick are no longer with the team. Cornick was let go in late April and it was later learned Robinson had left the team, as well.
Meanwhile, both owners have denied there have been any changes made to the coaching staff that led the Kings to a first-place finish in the regular season before being eliminated in five games by the St. John’s Maple Leafs in the best-of-seven provincial major hockey league final.
Littlejohn said what the two owners are wrestling with is their own business as owners of the team who have the right to pick and choose who coaches their team. He said it’s not uncommon to see major midget teams replace coaches, pointing out that the Tri-Pen Osprey fired their head coach during mid-season and other teams have been known to make changes at the end of a season where expectations weren’t met by the owners.
The Kings had a really good season and Littlejohn believes it’s important that the team be a big part of the provincial major midget landscape for years to come.
“They’re certainly a key cog in our league and we need them to be a healthy franchise and I’m sure they will be and they will be ready to go,” he said.