ARLINGTON, Va. (WHTM) — Scott Allen is no stranger to MedStar Capitals Iceplex in Arlington, but being the man in charge is certainly a new adjustment.
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The 27th head coach in franchise history led his first Capitals Rookie Camp this week, marking his first official skate in his new role.
“It was a strong three days,” Allen said after the third and final practice of rookie camp. “The organization is an outstanding organization from top to bottom from Washington to Hershey, even right down to our East Coast affiliate in South Carolina.”
The Capitals promoted Allen to head coach of the franchise in August after Spencer Carbery accepted an assistant coach position in the NHL with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Allen was an assistant for Chocolate & White since 2019.
“It’s been an easy adjustment,” Allen said of assuming his new role. “We have such a strong staff, so it helps in a big way. That makes it a lot more enjoyable.”
Allen brings 25 years of coaching experience to Hershey, coaching in over 1,800 games across the NHL, AHL, and ECHL. He has been a head coach in the American Hockey League with the Portland Pirates in 2016 and twice took over the role mid-season with San Antonio from 2002-04.
His role in Capitals preseason centers on prepping young players for a shot at playing in the NHL and working to develop the prospects the organization has before the season begins.
“We’re in the salary cap era, so it’s very important that you’re able to develop some guys in house,” Allen said. “It doesn’t matter to [the Capitals] if it is a drafted player [or] free agent signing, we strive to bring out the best in every player. That’s our job. to make sure we’re getting the most and squeezing every ounce of juice out of every player.”
Capitals will begin full team camp on Wednesday, September 22. The Hershey Bears begin their training camp activities in early October.
“One thing I like to do when a new season starts [is ensure] everybody gets a clean skate,” Allen said. “You hope that some guys have really stepped up their game by what they’ve done in their offseason training and [it’s] a clean slate. Here we go; new season.”
The Hershey Bears open the season on Saturday, October 16 against the Charlotte Checkers at the Giant Center.