TULSA, Okla. – The Tulsa Oilers announced that Bruce Ramsay is stepping down from his position as Head Coach and will accept an assistant coaching position with the Grand Rapids Griffins, the American Hockey League affiliate of the Detroit Red Wings.
Ramsay will be re-united in Grand Rapids with his long-time friend and former teammate, Todd Nelson, who was recently named the new Head Coach of the Griffins. Ramsay and Nelson played together in Grand Rapids during the 1996-97 and 1997-98 seasons and helped lead the Muskegon Fury (UHL) to a Colonial Cup Championship in the 2001-02 campaign. Nelson became the Muskegon Head Coach in 2003 and Ramsay served as his assistant from 2004-06. The duo guided the Fury to a Colonial Cup title in 2005.
“This is an incredible opportunity for me and my family and I want to thank Todd Nelson and the entire Griffins organization for believing in my abilities,” said Ramsay. “Although I am excited for the next step in my career, it is very difficult to leave Tulsa. I am extremely proud of what we were able to accomplish in six years and the Oilers’ front office staff, players, and certainly the fans, will always hold a special place for me and my family. We are so grateful for their support and their friendship.”
In six seasons behind the Tulsa bench, Ramsay guided the Oilers to three playoff appearances. The 46-year-old compiled an overall record of 185-178-35 (.507) and ranks second on the Oilers’ all-time list of regular season wins, playoff wins, and total games coached. In 2011, Ramsay coached the Oilers to their first playoff series victory in 17 years. He led the 2013-14 Oilers to a 12-win improvement over the previous season and in 2014-15, Tulsa’s first season in the ECHL, Ramsay’s squad posted 37 victories, the second-highest win total in team history.
“I want to say a special thank you to our owners, Rodney, Brandon, and Johnny Steven, my friend and General Manager, Taylor Hall, our former owner Jeff Lund, and every single one of our players for making these last six years the best years of my life,” Ramsay remarked. “The owners and the staff were always behind us and gave me the tools to succeed and improve. I feel so fortunate to have the privilege to coach so many outstanding players and I thank each and every one of them for their hard work, their sacrifice, and their respect.”