The Pictou County Weeks Crushers of the Maritime Hockey League have hired Mike Danton as their new head coach
The Crushers announced his appointment on Wednesday.
Danton, born in Brampton, Ontario, played three seasons in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) winning a league championship and competing in the finals of the 2000 Memorial Cup hosted by the Halifax Mooseheads.
He was drafted in the fifth round by the New Jersey Devils and played parts of four seasons with the Devils and St. Louis Blues.
He graduated summa cum laude from Saint Mary’s University with a double major in Psychology and Criminology. He also helped the Saint Mary’s Huskies win their only national championship in men’s hockey. From there, Danton played six professional seasons in Europe and North America as a player-coach while obtaining his degree and raising a growing family abroad.
Currently, Danton and his wife Nancy live in Halifax with their two sons, Tanner and Jaxson, and their daughter Sage. He has just completed his first year as a Master’s Student in Sports Psychology at the University of New Brunswick.
Crushers co-owner, Scott Burden, says that Danton was an easy decision.
“Mike and I have spoken at great lengths about his past – hockey and personal – and it is refreshing to see how far this man has come,” says Burden. “Mike’s ability to overcome adversity in his personal life, coupled with his work ethic, tenacity and knowledge for hockey make his mentality an extremely valuable asset. When you have an opportunity to grab a guy that has a plethora of knowledge on and off the ice – that can be directed towards our players – I think it would be a waste to let that pass.”
Danton said he is grateful and excited for the opportunity to help those – as he once was – on and off the ice.
“I appreciate the opportunity that Scott, Bruce and Pictou County have offered me,” he said. “I have worked relentlessly for everything I have, and I owe all of that to second chances and supportive people. I am excited to get started and instill an environment that will be well-received by the fans and successful within the dressing room.”
Next up for the Crushers is the MHL Draft in Edmundston, N.B. from June 13 to 15.