by Patrick Hoffman on 08/16/12 at 04:30 PM ET
As you folks are well aware of, there are a ton of great hockey websites and personalities out there.
One terrific hockey personality that is now the Director of Hockey Content at a great hockey website, Hockey PrimeTime.com is Caity Kauffman. If you are on Twitter, you are probably very well aware of how into hockey she is and how hard she works in the game.
Caity was kind enough to take time out of her extremely busy schedule to tell us about her background, how she got into the game and her new position at HockeyPrimeTime.com.
PH: How did you get into hockey?
CK: Completely on accident. I was a sophomore in college and picked up an internship with the ECHL team, The Florida Everblades, that was close by my college Florida Gulf Coast University. My first hockey games were the ones I attended for work, and initially I hated it. It wasn’t until my boss challenged me to write game recaps and be the in-game sideline reporter on FOX Sports radio that I stepped up and started absorbing everything there was to know about hockey.
In retrospect, I have no idea how I survived two live interviews per game (while walking on the ice in 5” heels, mind you - my tiny 5’0” frame needed an extra boost to get the mic to the face of the real tall ones) and did it without batting an eye or breaking a leg. I have a couple on my YouTube page and I always get a laugh listening to them. Some were great, some were… rookie. It was all a learning experience.
What it comes down to is - being able to tackle asking those questions on the ice with 3,000-5,000 fans watching and listening, and who knows how many more listening on live radio, while I only had a couple months of hockey experience under my belt really helped my confidence in this industry big time. If I can do that, I can do anything. Hockey gave me a backbone.
PH: Growing up, who was your favorite team/player? Why?
CK: The very first NHL game I ever went to was the Panthers/Bruins in February 2010 at the BankAtlantic Center. We were a few rows up from the goal, and Tuukka Rask happened to be the starter that night. The Bruins went on to win 3-2 after eight rounds of a shoot out so I was all, “Oh hey Finnish kid with a weird name! Awesome! You’re my favorite!”
PH: At what point in your life did you know that you wanted to work in sports/hockey media?
CK: Come on! You can’t beat a hockey game. The lightning fast pace, the crunch of skates on ice, that undeniable sweaty hockey gear smell. Twitter was big for me as well, I started tweeting about my Everblades experiences and started chatting with other hockey fans and media and couldn’t believe how awesome the hockey community was. I learned a lot about the game on Twitter - it was my encyclopedia for all things puck. Since then I’ve been lucky enough to meet face-to-face with a lot of those people.
PH: Tell us about what outlets you have covered hockey for. What did you learn about covering the game from working/volunteering at these particular outlets?
CK: I’ve done some random coverage, but I’ve really ventured more into public relations and producing. I previously worked for two seasons as PR Director of the Florida Jr. Blades of the now-Eastern Jr. Hockey League. I’ve had bylines in the Naples Daily News and Hockey Primetime (of course).
PH: You were recently named the Director of Hockey content for Hockey Prime Time. How did you get that gig?
CK: I’ll try to condense my crazy road to HPT - my boss found my resume on a retweet last August and after some chatting on the phone, asked me to interview with him and former NHL Network anchor Todd Lewis about interning for a new radio show on Sirius/XM - now known as Hockey Unfiltered. I abandoned my vacation with my boyfriend in South Carolina a day early to drive seven hours from SC to Tampa, Florida to interview with them over lunch. That’s right, I drove seven hours to interview for an unpaid internship.
Almost exactly a year later, I am the full-time director of Hockey Content on HockeyPrimetime.com and Executive Producer of multiple shows on HPT Radio and Sirius/XM. The creative freedom is incredible and I work with an awesome group of people. The CEO, Sam, and host of Hockey Unfiltered, Todd, have become great mentors and friends.
PH: What will be some of your roles as the Director of Hockey PrimeTime?
CK: There isn’t a hat I don’t wear. Assigning stories, social media, planning shows and segments, booking guests, business development, watching as much hockey as possible, planning and attending coverage at live events like the All-Star Game and Winter Classic - the list goes on. That’s the best part about my job - it changes all the time and it keeps me crazy busy. My poor iPhone is going to melt one day with all the emails and texts I send 24/7. I swear one day it will go on strike.
PH: What will you look to bring to Hockey Prime Time readers/listeners?
CK: The best hockey coverage on the Internet, of course.
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Patrick has a tremendous passion for hockey. Besides covering the Rangers and the NHL for Kukla's Korner, you can also find Patrick's work over at Sportsnet.ca, The Red Light District Hockey Blog, NHL Home Ice, and Liam Maguire's Ultimate Hockey web site.
Prior to writing for the above mentioned outlets, you could find Patrick's musings at hockey web sites/outlets such as TheHockeyNews.com, TheFourthPeriod.com, Spector's Hockey, Hokeja Vestnesis, Blueshirt Bulletin, SNYRangersBlog.com and many more.
For questions, comments and hip checks, feel free to e-mail Patrick at email@example.com.