by Todd Anderson
Roger Neilson, the late Ottawa Senators assistant coach, paved a new way of coaching when he regularly used video as a teaching tool. In 2006, the use of video to illustrate what coaches want from their players continues.
"Teams often change strategies from the last time you played them; watching video can give the players an idea of what to expect against a certain club," Ottawa Senators video coach Tim Pattyson says. "We show our guys clips from the most recent games the opposition has played and that gives us a better idea of what they're going to do. Also, if we want to change our forecheck, for example, we can show the guys how we're doing it and how we want to do it."
The 27-year-old Thunder Bay native spoke about his role with the team.
"Once we come off a game I start going through video of the game we just played that night," Pattyson says. "When we're away, I can usually get a lot of my work done on the plane before we arrive back in Ottawa. (Assistant coach John Paddock) and I will go through the scoring chances, for and against, when he comes in (to Scotiabank Place) the next morning and Greg (Carvel, the Senators other assistant coach) and I will go through the penalty kill and other aspects of the game."
Next, Senators head coach Bryan Murray meets with Pattyson to go over the chosen video clips. Murray also selects video clips himself to review with players in team meetings.
"A routine builds with these meetings," Pattyson says. "You get to correct mistakes and you can put forth a game plan to prepare for the next team you're going to play."
The players appreciate the bonuses of using video.
"Every game day we would go over other teams," centre Chris Kelly said. "To know other team's tendencies is huge."
Along with his video coaching duties, Pattyson also aids strength and conditioning coach Randy Lee during training sessions in the Senators conditioning room and also is an instructor during the annual Senators rookie development camp.
Lee, the former Senators video coach and Carvel, who held the same position with the Anaheim Ducks, both offered guidance to Pattyson during his first season.
When the season comes to an end, Pattyson receives the odd request from players to put together a video package with some of their highlights from the season.
"Dany Heatley's took a while to put together," Pattyson says. "He scored a lot of goals last year. Patrick Eaves also likes to come and see these videos because he has a background in this sort of thing from school."