Interview with Golden Knights Coach Ryan McGill
This week American Grit had the opportunity to sit down and talk with Assitant Coach Ryan McGill of the Vegas Golden Knights. We talked on several topics and let us be the first to tell you if you’re not impressed with how this team, coaching staff, and front office conducts business and inspires their city, then something has got to be wrong with you.
The first question we asked Ryan was “Hockey and Las Vegas, don’t seem to go together, how has the city been supportive of you and your team this year?
The reply made us extremely proud of the city of Las Vegas. Ryan told us that the city had been “phenomenal, right from day one.” He went on to explain that despite Las Vegas’ popularity for tourism, the locals have made the Golden Knights there team and cheer the loudest during the games, and there isn’t a car without a Golden Knights sticker to be found in the city.
Next up we asked Ryan “For an inaugural season, the team has had great success, how do you build on the success for this coming year?” His reply, again impressive with a focus on the team working together as one, setting the bar. He stated that “The players set the bar, and ensure that we never rest on our laurels..only looking forward.”
For some expansion teams just making it this far would be a success, but we have in our mind that the players are hungry for more and the entire organization has empowered that attitude.
When dealing with the NHL, there are tons of talented teams and players, we asked Ryan “Each year, talented teams and players don’t make it this far in the playoffs, can you tell us how you were able to unite the team in such a short time and achieve such great success?”
Keeping with the theme of being unified with a common goal Ryan told us that “The players take it upon themselves, everyone wants success, to a man each guy wants to do things the right way. They don’t want to be a typical expansion team. We didn’t research the player so much as we researched the person we were going to pick.”
Next up were some questions we had about Coach McGill’s influences “Coming up through the ranks of coaching, what coaches have you been able to model your style after the most?”
“I don’t really know of any coaches I’ve modeled myself after I’ve just tried to instill good values. Learn and know your people, not adopt a particular style, build the relationship with players, know when to help them and when to leave them alone.”
We had to ask “Who is your favorite player or coach of all time and why?”
Without hesitation, Ryan answered that his favorite player was “Steve Yzerman because he was able to change identity and the skill set for the team to win two consecutive Stanley Cups”
As we all know, no matter what our passion is, sometimes the grind of life gets us in a slump, we asked Ryan “What or who inspires you daily to strive for and achieve excellence the way you’ve been able to?”
To his credit and again keeping with the theme, Coach McGill answered “The opportunity to work with good people, you never want to let them down. Plus a great environment to work in as well.”
And at long last, we had to ask “What does the support of Grunt Style mean to this team?”
Ryan was happy to reply regarding Grunt Style and all of the sponsors that they could “Feel the energy they bring appreciate the support it’s amazing and contributed to the work ethic of the team.”
All in all Ryan McGill was an absolute pleasure to talk to. As we were taught in the military it seems they’ve learned and passed on those same lessons as well, being grateful for where you are and having a desire to win as a team. Those two ideals are extremely prevalent in their play and in this interview, you can see it and you can feel it.
Thank you once again to Coach Ryan McGill and the entire Vegas Golden Knights organization, we wish you the best in your playoff run!