After two years at the helm of Team Canada West — and with a pair of World Junior A Challenge gold medals under his belt — former Vancouver Canucks great Darcy Rota is looking to bring similar success back to the Burnaby Express. The club has announced that Rota is once again assuming its General Manager duties.
After leading the Express to the RBC Royal Bank Cup — Canada's National Junior A Championship — in 2006, Rota stepped away from the GM's chair to concentrate on the Western entry at the inaugural WJAC. But he remained close to the team, retaining his roles as Team President and Governor.
And heading into the 2008/09 season, it's clear that Rota's focus remains set on winning.
“After discussions with my partners in Burnaby, it was clear that they would like me to step back in as General Manager and lead our organization to another National Championship,” Rota says of his return to the team's day-to-day operations.
“The experience of representing your country in the World Junior A Challenge was very special and to have the opportunity to work with great players and excellent staff for Team Canada West was something I will always cherish.”
Now, his fellow owners with the Express are looking forward to Rota bringing his Championship track record back to the British Columbia Hockey League club.
“Everyone is delighted that Darcy is returning to the position,” Express part-owner Pat Delesalle says. “We are very confident that his tremendous success in Junior A hockey will bring another championship to Burnaby.”
Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations Dave McLellan, who has reported to a hockey committee the past two seasons, will now work directly with Rota.
“I'm looking forward to working with Darcy and having the opportunity to rely on the experience and knowledge he has in hockey,” McLellan says.