Brent Batten started work as the Estevan Bruins' marketing/operations manager on Monday.It may have been the first time he'd looked forward to setting foot inside the Civic Auditorium."It's nice to be on this side of things when we come down here for a change," he said with a grin.Batten played for the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League's Nipawin Hawks in 2000-01 and says the Bruins, even en route to a last-place finish that season, were always a pain to play in their own rink."They're always hard working. That's always been a trademark of the Bruins," said Batten. "It's a tough building to come into and play. I've had a lot of buddies that actually played down here and it's never been any fun to come into this building."Originally from the Brandon, Man. area, Batten played the following season in Manitoba with the Dauphin Kings.He later went into the marketing side of the game with the Alberni Valley Bulldogs (BCHL), Penticton Lakers (KIJHL), and the Okanagan Hockey School before he was hired by the Bruins in March to replace Jaime Garrett.One of Batten's first orders of business will be finalizing plans for the Bruins early-bird season ticket drive, which will be kicking off later this month.Like his predecessors Batten will also be responsible for selling advertising, organizing school visits, and game day co-ordination, among countless other duties."Priority No. 1 is really getting the community involved with the team," he said. "We want people to realize this is their team we're looking forward to having a competitive team, and fans should be excited about the brand of hockey we're going to bring in here."
© Copyright Estevan Mercury