Sault Ste. Marie – As preparations for the 2013-14 OHL season continue, Soo Greyhounds GM Kyle Dubas announced a major overhaul to the Program’s Hockey Operations department earlier today.
AJ MACLEAN was named Assistant Coach of the program.
"AJ MacLean brings to us the experiences of learning from some of the best hockey coaches of this era. Not only is that experience invaluable, but the puck possession style that those teams play is of vital importance. His ability to teach players the proper way to develop the ability to master puck possession is what makes AJ a great addition for us” commented Dubas.
A native of Antigonish, NS, MacLean is coming off this third season with the Dundee Stars of the European Elite Hockey League where he was player/coach for the last two seasons. He is the son of Jack Adams Award winner, and present Ottawa Senators coach Paul MacLean.
“I'm extremely excited to join the Greyhounds’ staff. I’m very honoured to get an opportunity to coach at such a high level and with a motivated group” began MacLean.
“I think this is a terrific experience for me to learn from Sheldon and sharpen my coaching skills and knowledge of the game for the future. Coaching has always been apart of my life and now I can solely focus on getting better everyday at it”
The 29-year old had a junior career spanning three seasons with the Halifax Mooseheads, where he was named QMJHL Humanitarian of the Year, before subsequently playing CIS and semi-professional hockey for 10 seasons.
At the conclusion of each playing season, AJ has joined the staff of his father’s club in Detroit and Ottawa and has learned valuable lessons from many professional coaches including the elder MacLean.
“Being able to sit around and talk hockey with great hockey coaches like Mike Babcock , Todd McLellan and Bryan Murray, just to name a few, is an incredible experience. They've been through it all and to hear how they've handle success and failure is a learning experience you can't get anywhere else. I feel very lucky to have been able to learn from them for so many years” continued the Hounds newest member of their coaching staff.
“My dad has had a huge impact on me. He's taught me everything I know about hockey and to always be myself.”
JOE CIRELLA, who enters his 2nd season with the Program and 9th in the OHL, has been promoted to Associate Coach.
Meanwhile, with the goal to maximize the interaction and development of each player of the Program, MIKE OLIVERIO has been assigned the team’s Forward Development Coach, while GREG AMADIO was hired as the Defence Development Coach.
"We are very excited today to introduce these significant changes to our Hockey Operations staff. As a Program, we always need to be adapting to the needs of the student-athletes, and one of the areas we keyed in on was positional development” explained Dubas.
Oliverio, was originally hired as an Assistant Coach by the Hounds in time for the 2011-12 season.
"We feel that by adding Greg Amadio to the already great work that Mike Oliverio has done with us, that our forwards and defence will receive more instruction and opportunities to not only maximize their development on the ice, but far surpass it” said Dubas.
Amadio, a Sault Ste. Marie ON native, recently retired after playing in 8 season of semi-professional hockey. His defensive career, primarily in the American Hockey League, followed four years at Michigan Tech.
"I'm very excited to be joining the Soo Greyhounds organization and I appreciate the opportunity given to me by both Kyle and Sheldon. I look forward to working with the current staff to develop the players into quality hockey players and men, while achieving our goal of success both on and off the ice” stated Amadio.
In the team’s Scouting Operations, the club has promoted VICTOR CARNEIRO to the position of Director of Player Personnel and hired DAVID BURSTYN as their Southwestern Ontario Scout and BILL WARREN as their U.S. Scout.
“After much thought on how to best structure our staff, and evaluate the method that would best allow us to identify, recruit and develop players that best fit our program would be to create the Director of Player Personnel position & elevate Victor Carneiro to fill that position” began Dubas.
"In my time working in and around major junior hockey, I have never met two people as passionate and trustworthy as Wes Clark and Victor Carneiro. Insomuch, I believe there are few people as deserving of a more substantial role than Victor” he continued.
Carneiro joined the team prior to the 2011 OHL Priority Selection following 14 seasons working with the London Knights. He has previously was responsible for scouting the Toronto Area for the Hounds.
In Carneiro's new role as Director of Player Personnel, he will work alongside of Dubas and Clark to run the club's scouting division. Carneiro will also serve a major role in identifying players in the Ontario Hockey League, all junior levels, and midget hockey who may have the ability to become Greyhounds.
“I’m delighted and humbled to accept the role of Director of Player Personnel with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds,” said Victor Carneiro. “I look forward to working with the hockey operations staff to achieve our goal of building a championship winning team. ”
Burstyn, comes to the Hounds after eight previous seasons in the OHL split among the Saginaw Spirit, Sarnia Sting and Sudbury Wolves. Along with scouting well over 350 games per season, David has been the Director of Scouting for McKeens Hockey – an online scouting service while in 2010-11 he was a member of the scouting staff for the Atlanta Thrashers.
"I am very honoured and excited to join the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds Hockey Club; a team marred with a rich winning tradition in our league. I look forward to working with our team of dedicated scouts to evaluate and select players that will compliment our organization and help the franchise achieve it's goal of winning an OHL Championship and Memorial Cup title” stated Burstyn.
Warren presently coaches in the Detroit Little Caesars system. Last year he helped lead the Detroit Honeybaked U18 AAA team to the Michigan State Championship. He also has previously coached the Port Huron Fighting Falcons of NAHL where he led them to the league finals.
“Bill is a very well connected invidual within the American Minor Hockey system. He has also shown a great ability to identify talent and has been a very successful recruiter as coach. We feel that adding a person of Bill’s caliber to our staff will also allow us to best maximize our ability to identify and recruit players in the Detroit, Chicago and all areas of the United States” concluded Dubas.
(Nathan can be reached at email@example.com)