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Two new coaches enlisted to Prince George Spruce Kings

Nick Drazenovic, Jessie Leung joining BCHL champions’ hockey ops
Nick Drazenovic (left) and Jessie Leung are joining the Prince George Spruce Kings' hockey operations staff for the 2019-20 season (via Kyle Balzer/Trail Smoke Eaters)

A Prince George product and local hockey celebrity is among two new coaches joining the Spruce Kings on-ice staff for the upcoming season.

Nick Drazenovic will act as the team’s new skills and development coach, moving to the B.C. Hockey League (BCHL) after spending three years with the Prince George Cougars as both its director of player development and associate coach.

The 32-year-old played five seasons with the Cougars in the junior career (2002-2007) along with 12 games under his belt between three different NHL clubs and over 500 American League (AHL) starts before moving into a hockey operations role.

Drazenovic takes the new position weeks after the Cougars named Mark Lamb as both General Manager and Head Coach and the adding of associate Jason Smith.

“I am excited to join the Spruce Kings and I am excited to help grow hockey development in the city that has given me so much,” he said in a statement.

The Spruce Kings have also hired a new assistant coach to join newly-appointed bench boss Alex Evin following the departure of Fred Page and Doyle Cup-winning head coach Adam Maglio.

Jessie Leung is moving to B.C.’s northern capital after spending two seasons in the lower Okanagan valley as a secondary boss to the Trail Smoke Eaters.

Before his promotion to the BCHL, the 34-year-old spent six seasons with the Valley West Hawks in the B.C. Major Midget League (BCMML), three of which in the head coach’s chair.

“I’m excited to be joining a first-class organization in the Prince George Spruce Kings,” Leung said in a team release. “As someone who watched the program from afar last season, I was impressed with the structure, execution and accountability demonstrated throughout the team.”

Prince George’s hockey operations staff will be in full force later this month when training camp begins at the Rolling Mix Concrete Arena (RMCA).

The 2019-20 season begins Sept. 6 at home for the Spruce Kings.