Mackin: Why Lord was the coach for me

Todd Mackin has revealed the qualities that led him to recruit Andrew Lord to the ECHL (PHOTO: Rapid City Rush)

Greenville Swamp Rabbits president Todd Mackin has revealed why Andrew Lord was the coach for him.

In an exclusive interview with British Ice Hockey, Mackin spoke of the impression the now former Cardiff Devils coach made on him as he looked to replace previous coach, Kevin Kerr.

And Lord’s new boss revealed how the 35-year-old impressed him before they even got the chance to have a conversation.

“There came a point where I decided we had to make a different move,” Mackin said. “I was connected to Andrew through the assistant general manager at the LA Kings, who I trust for his hockey knowledge.

“From there I had two or three good conversations with Andrew.  It went really quickly and I believed in him and his mindset was exactly to mine which was important and I couldn’t be happier it worked out this way.

LISTEN: The exclusive interview with Greenville Swamp Rabbits president Todd Mackin

“It was imperative for us to go in a new and different direction, going for someone young, new, energetic and all the things Andrew brings to the table.

“He’s the perfect fit for what we want to do and we want him to grow with us and pandemic or not, it’s a direction we would have taken away.”

“What he did was put together detailed preparation on our team before I even had a conversation with him.  He was telling me where our strengths and weaknesses were and brought so much more than had expected.

“His passion really jumped off the page and that was important to me.  Our viewpoints aligned and that was exciting for me so when the ownership spoke to him and had the same impression, that was fantastic.”

Mackin says he’s been struck by the reaction by the fans in Cardiff to Lord’s move, with plenty of messages from heartbroken Devils fans delighted by this new opportunity for their beloved coach.

He says he wants to be in the same position as counterpart Todd Kelman in reluctantly seeing him move on for bigger and better things – but once he’s done what needs to be done at the ECHL side first.

Lord won two league titles, two Challenge Cups and two play-off titles (PHOTO: Dave Williams)

He added: “Lordo’s a winner, dedicated and hard working and the reaction from Cardiff has opened our fans eyes a lot and the excitement has jumped a lot based on passionate they had about a man and as a coach.

“I hope in three years we’re having the same situation Cardiff have right now where he’s won some championships and he moves on to the next stage.

“One of the things I’ve said from day one is I want our coaches at ECHL level to be an extension of the AHL coaching staff and when they’re looking for a guy, they look no further than us.

“At the end of the day, I wasn’t sure our previous coach would have made it to the American league. I’m very sure Andrew will have that opportunity in the future.

“I know he missed out on some opportunities, but their loss is definitely our gain and I’m pleased to get it locked down and bring Lordo here.”

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