Written by Vinny Messana Thursday, 12 September 2013 00:00
Representing Team USA is a tremendous honor, even for athletes and coaches who have had illustrious careers in their respective sports. For Bill Jaffe, it was extra special, coming full circle.
A former standout hockey player at the University of Michigan in the late 1980s, Jaffe had the honor of coaching the USA men’s ice hockey team to a silver medal in the Maccabiah tournament in Israel last month. It was the first time that ice hockey was a part of the tournament since 1997, when Jaffe was team captain.
“It was a wonderful experience being with that group of players,” said the 44-year-old Williston Park resident. “The players were fantastic people and did everything they were asked. It was a real treat.”
The Maccabiah is an international sporting event for Jewish athletes held in Israel every four years. The athletes are generally aged between 19 and 25. The event involves nearly every sport and has featured notable athletes such as Mark
Spitz, who won seven Olympic gold medals as a swimmer.
Overall, Team USA finished second out of 19 participating countries with 191 medals during the tournament. Only Israel finished ahead of them, with 411.
Hockey is not a very popular sport in Israel, which posed a bit of a challenge. There is only one full size rink in the entire country. Jaffe called it a “unique experience,” coming back 16 years later.
“Going as a coach, I viewed it from a different perspective,” he said. “I understand things a little different now.”
Since his time as a player, Jaffe has been around the NHL for 15 years as a color commentator and analyst on various networks. He began with the Chicago Blackhawks’ radio network and moved on to the Atlanta Thrashers before making a name for himself as the New York Islanders commentator alongside veteran game-caller Howie Rose. He is now an analyst on the NHL Network.
Still, Jaffe’s greatest thrill is being involved with the development of the next breed of great hockey players. “Playing in Israel gave these players great experience that will benefit them.”
Last Updated (Monday, 29 November 1999 19:00) Wednesday, 30 July 2014 00:00
Operation Main Street, a plan that would see a section of Jericho Turnpike in New Hyde Park revamped with traffic calming features and aesthetic updates, is finally in the home stretch, New Hyde Park village officials say. Village contractor J. Anthony Enterprises will be putting the finishing touches on the $1.46 million project this week.
“It’s all but finished,” trustee Donald Barbieri said. “Honestly, I feel good. It’s looking solid. It took forever to get it done. They’re going to put more benches in and plantings; striping the road.”
New Hyde Park’s department of public works will maintain the planters and medians installed for the project. Twenty-five potted plants were recently installed along the turnpike, officials stated. More than 10 benches will be available on the turnpike.
Last Updated (Monday, 29 November 1999 19:00) Saturday, 26 July 2014 00:00
Dedicating itself to brining freshly made burgers to its customers, Smashburger in New Hyde Park provides gourmet hamburgers, but with a twist.
Since its grand opening on Oct. 18, 2013, business at Smashburger has been a smash, says owner Irwin Kruger.
“The location has been great for us,” added Kruger. “We have good tenants that surround us. It’s conveniently located on Marcus Avenue, and there’s plenty of parking.”
Thursday, 24 July 2014 00:00
The Sewanhaka Indians’ very talented lacrosse defenseman, Tyler Regnier, will be playing next season for the Division 1 Rutgers University Scarlet Knights.
Regnier started playing lacrosse as a third grader, when he played with the New Hyde Park Police Activity League, a youth lacrosse program.
“At first, I wasn’t too serious,” he said recently. “But I just stuck with it, a lot of training, a lot of travel and a lot of practice made it happen.”
Thursday, 17 July 2014 00:00
Students at Charles Water Karate & Fitness in Williston Park received belt promotions after completing a series of extensive exams.
From New Hyde Park: Jonah Khorrami to brown belt, Isabella Castelli to purple belt.
From Mineola: Alexandra Santos and Kayla Toal to, Kayla Toal yellow belt, Jason DeJesus to Yellow/White Belt.
From Williston Park: Mario Lombardo to red belt, Daniel Melore to blue belt, Grayson Lee to yellow/white belt.
From Garden City: Alexandra Delgais: to brown belt, Jake Delgais to yellow/white belt.
From Roslyn Heights: Suhani Jain to red belt.
From Uniondale: Isiah McClean to yellow/white belt.