Derek Plante Returns To UMD Men’s Hockey Program
Former UMD and NHL standout Derek Plante has been hired as associate men's hockey coach.
According to USCHO, this is his 3rd time back as a staff member. Plante was on the UMD Bulldogs hockey staff when they won their first NCAA National Championship. He returns this time after being on the Chicago Blackhawks coaching staff.
According to USCHO, Plante said he was "honored and jumped at the opportunity" to be working with Scott Sandelin. UMD has changed since Plante was a student and coach. The UMD Bulldogs are now in the newly formed National Collegiate Hockey Conference or NCHA, which has become one of the strongest leagues in the nation. The NCHA has the National Champion coming from its league the last 4 years, and in 2017 both finalists were from the league.
Derek Plante told USCHO that he is in a different stage of life and this is exciting to join the team with a new skill set of knowledge and has served as a head coach for the US Under 18 Select team when they took third in 2014. He also said working for another former UMD hockey player, Norm Maciver doing player development in Chicago, was a great experience and sets him up well for his return to his alma mater.
In my opinion, he brings NHL knowledge, playing for many teams and coaching, and winning a Stanley Cup with Dallas as a player. He also brings international experience as well as being a coach in the NHL developing players. Derek Plante might be the missing part of the puzzle for Scott Sandelin to become a College Hockey Dynasty and win more championships.