I had the pleasure of speaking with Frantz Jean the recently appointed goaltending coach of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Frantz is clearly a knowledgeable coach who is able to convey his understanding of the position and we are thankful for him taking the time with us. He has offered to remain as a resource for inGoal and hope to bring more of his experience to our readers this season and beyond.

In our conversation we discussed:

  • The life of an NHL goalie coach – it’s long hours and hard work.
  • How working with NHL goalies differs from junior and younger goalies – teir skills are refined and they are able to implement a coaches suggestions quickly and precisely.
  • How Frantz established a relationship and earned the respect of the Lightning’s NHL goalies – he reached out to them as soon as he was hired and counts on earning respect by arriving each day thoroughly prepared.
  • Dan Ellis and Mike Smith – their strengths and areas Frantz is working with them.
  • Tampa’s depth in goal – Cedrick Dejardins, Dustin Tokarski and Jaroslav Janus. Frantz has left each of them with specific areas of their game to work on to bring their games to the next level.
  • Advice for young goaltenders – spend 80% of your time on footwork – and for parents and coaches.

Thanks to Katie Moore for the use of photos. See more lightning photos in her Flickr stream. Thank you also to Dinur Blum for the Mike Smith puckhandling shot. Check out his photostream here.

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One Response to Interview: Frantz Jean, Goaltending Coach Tampa Bay Lightning

  1. Tomas Hertz,MD,BA says:

    Nice interview. The majority of stuff is as per other interviews with professional goaltending coaches. Two very interesting points. 1) With a mature body, style, technique and approach of course it will take less time to make changes with professional goaltenders. Point in case should be for us all to wathc what happens , good or bad, with Luongo and Rolie suggesting he play a bit deeper in the blue paint as per a recent article. The constant coaching that is required with youngsters proves why it takes such a long time to develop a goaltender and why we are developmentally slower than our non-goalie teammates. 2) Yes, I completely agree that Hockey Canada does a poor job with goaltender development in general. They have a developmental period with which I am very familiar and which I follow for the most part. There is a gross lack of qualified goalie coaches at the grassroots level and this will hurt the number of truly elite goalie who come from the CHL. The Finns have it correct with a goalie coach for each team for each level of minor hockey and ,as noted, the proof is in the pudding. I watched Mike Smith train this past August since he lives close to Kingston, Ontario. Spoke with him and have always been amazed by his puck-handling and shooting abilities. I will make reference to him in a new article in 2011.

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