Soo Greyhounds General Manager Kyle Dubas
announced early Monday morning that Mike Stapleton was relieved of his
coaching duties and SHELDON KEEFE has been named the team’s new Head Coach. He becomes the 18th different Head Coach in Greyhounds team history
was extremely difficult decision. Over the past 20 months working with
Mike we have gone through a lot of ups and downs together, and become
very close friends. I would like to thank Mike for his hard work and
dedication to our program over his time here. These young men here have
learned a lot from Mike, and when they look back on their time being
coached by Mike they will realize that they have learned a lot about
developing as a young man and a hockey player” began Dubas.
32-year old Keefe joins the Hounds after spending the past six seasons
as GM/Head Coach of the Pembroke Lumber Kings (CCHL). During that time
the Brampton, ON native led the Kings to a league record five
consecutive championships (2007-2011) accumulating a regular season
record of 265-76-20 along with a 67-22 post-season mark.
became the fastest coach in league history to 200 wins and also guided
the Kings to the 2007 and 2011 Fred Page Cup Eastern Canadian
Championship and 2011 RBC Cup Canadian Junior A National Championship.
was selected by Hockey Canada as an Assistant Coach of Team Canada East
for the 2012 World Jr. A Challenge and was named Head Coach for the
2011 Canadian Jr. A Top Prospect game.
"In every conversation
that I had regarding a replacement for Mike, whether it was with NHL
scouts or executives, Hockey Canada personnel, or his competitors at the
Junior A level one of the first names that kept coming up with regards
to 'best coach available' was Sheldon Keefe” commented Dubas.
a young coach, Sheldon has had unprecedented success in Pembroke. He is
a proven winner as a head coach and feel that his experiences with
Pembroke and Hockey Canada will allow him to have success at the Major
"Sheldon's Pembroke teams are renowned for being
well prepared and well structured while playing a high-pressure,
disciplined, puck possession style. Given that body of work, I felt
Sheldon was the best coach to have our team reach it's full potential”
concluded the Hounds GM.
Keefe played two seasons in the OHL
between the Toronto St. Michael’s Majors and Barrie Colts. In 1998-99
he was named the OHL Rookie of the Year and later advanced to the
Mastercard Memorial Cup with Barrie in 1999-00.
After being drafted 47th
overall in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft by the Tampa Bay Lightning he spent
125 games in the NHL before ending his playing career in the AHL in
The Hounds newest Head Coach will join the team on
Tuesday in Sault Ste. Marie in preparation for the team’s upcoming
Assistant Coaches Joe Cirella, Seamus Kotyk and Mike Oliverio will remain with the club.
(Nathan can be reached at email@example.com)