OTTAWA – The Ottawa Senators announced today that the club has named Don Nachbaur as head coach of its American Hockey League affiliate, the Binghamton Senators.
Nachbaur has been head coach of the Western Hockey League’s Tri-City Americans for the last six seasons, earning a .592 winning percentage with 235 wins, 155 losses, 25 overtime losses and 17 shootout defeats over the span of 432 regular-season games. His teams made the playoffs in each of his seasons behind the bench, advancing as far as the conference final in 2007-08. The Americans won the WHL’s U.S. Division regular-season title in each of the last two seasons, the first time in franchise history they accomplished the feat.
Nachbaur has twice been named WHL coach of the year, first in 1994-95 when he led the Seattle Thunderbirds to a 42-28-2 record and again with Tri-City two seasons ago , when the club recorded a franchise record 108 regular-season points with a 52-16-2-2 record.
Before his move to bench boss for the Americans, Nachbaur served as an assistant coach from 2000-01 to 2001-02 with the American Hockey League’s Philadelphia Phantoms. The 50-year-old Nachbaur began his coaching career in 1994-95, when he was named head coach of the Seattle Thunderbirds. He won WHL coach of the year that season and remained in Seattle as their head coach for six more.
Prior to his coaching career, Nachbaur played professional hockey for 14 years, including parts of eight seasons in the National Hockey League with the Hartford Whalers, Edmonton Oilers and Philadelphia Flyers. In 223 career NHL games, he scored 23 goals, added 46 assists and recorded 465 penalty minutes. He was Hartford’s third-round selection (60th overall) in the 1979 NHL Entry Draft.
The native of Kitimat, B.C., is married to Kim and has two children: daughter Sydney, 17, and son Daniel,14.
Nachbaur replaces Curtis Hunt, who coached the last 32 games of Binghamton’s 2008-09 season following Cory Clouston’s promotion to the NHL’s Senators. Hunt returned to the WHL’s Regina Pats following the completion of the 2008-09 AHL season.
The B-Sens, who finished the 2008-09 season with a 41-30-5-4 record and did not quality for the AHL playoffs, will host their 2009-10 home-opener on Saturday, Oct. 3.(Nathan also is a writer for Maineiacs Post to Post and the Maine Hockey Journal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)