3View: Atlanta Capitals
The 3View series will feature an in-depth look into all NA3HL teams in preparation for the 2021-22 season, with two teams being highlighted daily, leading all the way up until the start of the regular season. 3View goes in-depth into each NA3HL team and will include interviews with all the head coaches in the NA3HL, as they provide fans with their expectations and outlook for the 2021-22 season, including taking a look at their potential roster and their strengths as a team for the upcoming season. It will also take a look back on the 2020-21 season and how each team fared and what they accomplished. Best of all, 3View will provide the fans of the NA3HL with an inside look at their favorite team and what to expect.
2020-21 Record: 22-16-2, 46 pts (4th in the South Division)
2021 Playoffs: Lost in Division Semi-Finals
Head Coach: John Bowkus
2021-22 Division: South
The Atlanta Capitals qualified for the playoffs for a sixth consecutive season in 2020-21. And though they were bounced out of the postseason in the division semi-finals, the team continues to establish a solid foothold in the South Division.
With a new bench boss at the helm ahead of the 2021-22 campaign, the focus now turns to using that foothold to thrive in the postseason. Head Coach John Bowkus knows there is plenty of learning and development on the journey ahead.
“In all of my past coaching experiences, there is a learning curve and the faster that we can teach the players how to play at this level, the earlier the success comes on the ice,” he said.
With that learning curve in mind, Bowkus and his staff will lean on a solid veteran presence in the locker room to help the growing process along.
Nick Falkowski, Nick Mumford, Kirill Nikulichev and Nikita Pecheritcyn will again don the red and blue and look to lead Atlanta to the top of the South.
“Success will be measured by how much stronger we can make the players physically and mentally with all the travel and games that are played in such a short time,” said Bowkus, “Having a full coaching staff that is new to the team, we are going to rely a lot on our returning veterans. We expect their leadership to help guide all our new players in the right direction with how they act on/off the ice, in the community, on the bench, in the locker room, and especially in the weight room.”
And if all goes to plan, some of those veterans — and some of the fresh faces — should earn some looks from the NAHL or the NCAA. That, says Bowkus, will truly cement his first season behind the bench in Atlanta as a debut to be proud of.
“We will be ecstatic if any one of our players gets a call up during the season or gets a chance to move to any Tier 1 or Tier 2 league. We would be just as happy if a player gets an opportunity to go and play in college. Many of us coaches are not family advisors, but being in this coaching position, we know it is a big part of our jobs! We are happy to do it,” he said.
For now, though, Bowkus, his staff and his players are just ready to drop the puck and play an exciting style on the ice.
“We expect to play an upbeat brand of hockey utilizing lots of puck possession time,” he said.
“We want to play fast.”
Next up: Austin Ice Bats