Head Coach Jason Smith
Jason Smith was hired as the 10th head coach in the history of the Kelowna Rockets on July 6, 2016.
Known as Gator during his playing days, Smith was a rugged, stay-at-home defenceman who played 1,008 regular season games in a 15 year NHL career where he was captain of two teams: The Edmonton Oilers and Philadelphia Flyers.
After his retirement in 2008-09, Smith took a few years off from hockey before joining the Ottawa Senators in a player development role and then as an assistant coach.
Smith is married and he and his wife have two children.
Assistant Coach Kris Mallette
Kris Mallette joined the Kelowna Rockets coaching staff in the summer of 2014. A former hard-nosed Rockets player who played in 152 games with the Rockets, joined the Rockets after five years as an assistant coach at various levels.
After his junior career, Mallette played professionally for nine seasons before retiring and moving onto coaching after the 2008-09 season.
As a coach Mallette was named the KIJHL Coach of the Year as head coach of the North Okanagan Knights (KIJHL) where he spent two seasons before working as an associate head coach of the Vernon Vipers (BCHL) in 2012-13.
Mallette lives in Kelowna with his wife Susie and their two daughters.
Assistant/Goalie Coach Travis Crickard
Travis Crickard joined the Rockets coaching staff in advance of the 2014-15 Western Hockey Leauge season. A native of St. Johns, Newfoundland, Crickard was a goaltender as a player before moving into coaching when his playing days were over.
Crickard was the head coach of the Ottawa 67’s midget AAA program for two years, taking the team as far as a silver medal at the Telus Cup Canadian Midget Championships. He then moved onto the OHL’s Ottawa 67’s for the 2013-14 season where he was an assistant and goaltender coach.
Skills Coach Kim Gellert
Orginally from Ontario, Rockets skills coach Kim Gellert has a decorated hockey resume as a former pro player. Now a full-time scout with the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres, Gellert first joined the Rockets as a skills instructor 2005-06.
After playing junior in his native Ontario and later at Lake Superior State, Gellert went on to a successful playing career in Italy, scoring more than 700 goals and winning six scoring titles over 16 seasons.
He has lived with his wife and kids in Kelowna since 1995.
Athletic Therapist Scott Hoyer
Scott Hoyer is in his second stint with the Kelowna Rockets, joining the team for the second time in advance of the 2013-14 WHL season. Hoyer originally worked with the Rockets from 2000 to 2006 before taking a job with the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers.
After two seasons with the Oilers, Hoyer returned to the Okanagan and worked with private hockey academies the Pursuit of Excellence and then the Okanagan Hockey Academy. Hoyer also has experience with Hockey Canada working the 2003 World Junior Hockey Championships in Halifax (silver) as well as winning a gold medal with Canada’s Under-18 team at the World U-18 Championships in 2001
Powerskating Coach Evan Marble
Evan Marble hails from the small town of Eston, Saskatchewan and joined the Rockets staff in the 2015-16 season. A resident of Kelowna, Marble is a former player, coach and current skating instructor, who had a WHL career that spanned 274 games and included a Memorial Cup Championship. He then played professionally in Europe as well as spent time with Team Canada.
Marble’s retirement allowed him to focus on his deep interest in powerskating which included getting a Bachelor of Kinesiology degree from the University of Calgary. His philosophy towards his teaching is that the biomechanics of each stride in each athlete is unique, and this allows him to help players efficiently transfer their energy into functionality on the ice.