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December 7, 2012, Prince George, BC – The Prince George Cougars are pleased to announce that former NHL player and two-time B.C. Major Midget League champion coach Todd Harkins will be joining the Prince George Cougars as an assistant coach during the back-half of December and early January.

Harkins will take over Jason Becker’s role of assistant coach while Becker pursues a gold medal as head coach of Team Pacific at the 2013 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge in Quebec.

“I’m very ecstatic for the opportunity to join the Prince George Cougars coaching staff,” said Todd Harkins. “I was very humbled to be asked, and I’ll do my best while Jason Becker is gone.”

After a 10-year professional player career that included stops with the Calgary Flames and Hartford Whalers, Harkins turned to coaching, and has found plenty of recent success. Harkins led the North Shore Winter Club to three Provincial Pee Wee championships, and more recently helped lead the Vancouver Northwest Giants to two Provincial Major Midget championships. He was named the 2011-2012 B.C. Major Midget League Coach of the Year.

Under Harkins’ reign, the 2011 Vancouver Northwest Giants became the first team from the B.C. Major Midget League to defeat an Alberta opponent in the Pacific Challenge. The Northwest Giants defeated Red Deer, and went on to finish fourth in the 2011 Telus Cup, losing a heartbreaker in double-overtime.

Harkins adds, “I am honored to get the chance to coach alongside Dean Clark. There is so much I can learn from him and hopefully together we can lead the Cougars to some victories.”

Todd Harkins’ son Jansen was selected second overall by the Prince George Cougars in the 2012 WHL Bantam Draft. He made his Western Hockey League debut with the Cougars on November 11th, in Vancouver against the Giants. So far this season, Harkins has scored six goals and 30 points in 17 games with the Vancouver Northwest Giants in the B.C. Major Midget League.

Todd Harkins’ first game as an assistant coach will be December 28th in Victoria when the Cougars face the Royals.