Mikhail Bykov Interview

One day in the life of a video coach

Today we bring you our second episode of customer experience interviews where some of our top clients share their firsthand InStat experience. We are privileged to be joined by our longtime user Mikhail Bykov, a video coach at HC Kunlun Red Star and China National Team.

I first learned about InStat about five years ago, when the company had just burst onto the KHL scene. I have been a regular and active user ever since.

InStat is a primary tool for both preparation and post-match analysis. Its database is virtually unlimited. InStat allows me to quickly download and break down the opponent’s game, including powerplays, go over the scored and conceded goals, breakaways. With InStat it is simple and easy to study the opponent by offense groups, defense tandems, identify powerplay lines that create the most chances and foresee who is likely to commit a blunder, and much more”, Mikhail says.


But the life of a video coach is not all honey. Sometimes you work hard, do your part perfectly well and it just does not happen. It can be frustrating, depressing, and devastating at times. Mikhail gave us a very detailed and emotional account of his well-oiled daily routine and told us how big a role InStat video database plays in it. 

The day after the game means early rise for me. I download our opponent’s latest match first thing in the morning – our games are normally played simultaneously. And then, I process the video through tagging software.

After that, I go back to our team’s shifts and send them to our players and coaching staff. I go on to download each of these shifts separately and sort them by powerplays and short-handed situations. I head to the arena; in the video room there is a laptop that I upload all stats and clips to. I print out the updated stats and hand them out to our coaching staff.

Then, I provide each coach with a video on our next opponent, they give me a task to make a playlist of our worst plays and mistakes from the previous game. We call a team meeting to watch it either in full or in bursts, depending on the session duration.

After that, I proceed to analyze the opponent’s goalies, prepare video clips on them. I compile a pre-scout report on them, produce short videos on each goaltender to show our team on game day. I print out the pre-scout reports and upload them to the laptop in the video room. Then I do a pre-scout report on the opponent.

Based on the InStat data, I draw up a tentative line-up, write a 5-7 sentence summary on each player pointing out their strong and weak points, look up main statistical parameters and suggest methods for neutralizing the opponent's best skills.

At that point, I go home and fall asleep, despite it being early in the evening. I wake up at three in the morning and start compiling playlists on the teams requested by our coaching staff the day before. By the time it is done, it is still early in the morning. And it starts all over again with a new opponent. Who knows if I would have got any sleep at all if it was not for InStat”. 

For more information, visit instatsport.com/hockey. You can also view instructional videos on the InStat Sport YouTube channel, or visit @InStatHockey on Twitter for the latest news and updates.