NHL Notebook: Seattle Kraken make Jessica Campbell first female assistant coach in league history

Seattle Kraken Jessica Campbell
Photo credit:© Taya Gray/The Desert Sun / USA TODAY NETWORK
Zach Laing
14 days ago
The Seattle Kraken continue to break hockey barriers and their latest move has seen them hire Jessica Campbell as the first female assistant coach in NHL history.
Campbell, 32, joined the organization in 2022 becoming the first woman behind a bench in the American Hockey League, working as an assistant coach for their affiliate Coachella Valley Firebirds. There, she joined head coach Dan Bylsma, who the Kraken promoted to their own head coach this spring.
Bylsma, Campbell and the rest of their staff helped carry the Firebirds to back-to-back Calder Cup Finals, falling in both to the Hershey Bears.
“Jessica and I spent the last two years coaching in Coachella Valley,” Bylsma said Tuesday. “I’m confident of what she can do for our staff and bring to the players. I watched her build strong relationships with prospects such as Tye Kartye, Shane Wright and Ryker Evans. She has the ability to relate to players about their games and what they bring to a team…That’s why she is such an appealing candidate and why she’s joining our staff.”
Here’s more on Campbell from Daily Faceoff’s Tyler Kuehl:
Prior to joining the Firebirds, Campbell built her credibility working as a skating and skills coach, as many NHLers went to the Moosomin, Saskatchewan native for offseason power skating. She worked with the likes of Luke Schenn, Mat Barzal and Brent Seabrook over her career.
She made her professional coaching debut in 2020, as she was hired by the Malmö Redhawks of the Swedish Hockey League as a skating coach. Campbell went on to join the Nürnberg Ice Tigers of the DEL in Germany in 2021-22 as a skills coach, before being promoted to assistant coach. In 2022, she was an assistant coach with Team Germany at the 2022 IIHF Men’s World Championship, becoming the first woman to coach in the tournament.
Campbell was also a pretty good player as well. She represented Canada at the 2009 and 2010 IIHF Women’s Under-18 World Championships, captaining her country to gold, and earning MVP honors, in 2010. Campbell also took home silver in her one and only appearance at the Women’s Worlds in 2015. She played four years at Cornell Univeristy, before a brief professional career that saw her win the Clarkson Cup with the Canadian Women’s Hockey League’s Calgary Inferno.

Panthers sign Lundell

The Flordia Panthers have locked up centre Anton Lundell for the foreseeable future, inking him to a six-year deal that will pay him a $5-million AAV, according to PuckPedia.
The 22-year-old was drafted by the Panthers 12th overall in the 2020 draft, breaking into the NHL in 2021-22. Across his 216 NHL games over the last three years, he’s scored 43 goals and 112 points, adding six goals and 28 points across 54 playoff games.

An early look at the 2025 draft

The dust has barely settled on this year’s offseason, with the draft and free agency already coming and going and Daily Faceoff’s Steven Ellis is already looking ahead to the 2025 draft. What an animal he is.
Here’s Ellis on the top three prospects in next year’s draft:

1. James Hagens, C (Boston College, NCAA)

Hagens is the clear No. 1 dog in this draft and would have had a realistic chance at challenging for the top spot in 2024 had he been born a few months earlier. The USA Hockey National Team Development Program product set the record for the most points at both the U-17 World Challenge and U-18 World Championship while being a driving force every time he hit the ice. He reminds scouts of Jack Hughes due to the way he combines skill and skating and he’s easily one of the most dynamic centers I’ve seen in a while. He’ll have a chance to replace Will Smith as Boston College’s top center next year, which will be a big step forward for him.

2. Porter Martone, RW (Brampton, OHL)

I really like Martone, who is truly a difficult player to contain. He helped Canada win gold at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup in August before embarking on his first full-time season with the Steelheads. Martone led the team with 33 goals and finished second with 71 points in 60 games, and had another six points in five games. The U-18 World Championship was icing on the cake as he kept himself in MVP contention from the start as Gavin McKenna’s right-hand man. Martone knows a thing or two about putting pucks in the back of the net – expect him to chase 50 on a competitive Steelheads squad next year. But he also continued to show his aggressive side, something that, on the surface, feels so odd the more you get to know him. His teammates consider him to be such a great guy, but he goes out there trying to rip people’s flesh off. He’s fun.

3. Anton Frondell, C (Djurgardens, Sweden U-20)

It was a shame we didn’t get to see Frondell at the U-18s because Sweden might have seriously had a shot at the gold medal game with him. Frondell has been fascinating to watch at the Swedish U-20 level, putting up about 1.6 points per game. Frondell was one of Sweden’s most productive junior players this year and even saw some pro action with Djurgardens’ Allsvenskan team. He only produced a single assist, but he showed he could hang with high-quality players all season long. Expect him to tear apart the Swedish U-20 league next year, assuming he doesn’t play a full year with Djurgardens’ senior squad.

Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing, or reached by email at zach@thenationnetwork.com.


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