BOSTON – The Boston Bruins of the National Hockey League announced that they have named Geoff Ward, who began his professional coaching career in the ECHL, as an assistant coach.
In addition to Ward there are 11 assistant coaches in the NHL who have ECHL experience with Dave Farrish of the Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks, Brian McCutcheon of the Buffalo Sabres, Jim Playfair of the Calgary Flames, John Torchetti and Ryan Stewart of the Chicago Blackhawks, Claude Noel of the Columbus Blue Jackets, Charlie Huddy of the Edmonton Oilers, Jamie Kompon of the Los Angeles Kings, Peter Horachek of the Nashville Predators, Daniel Lacroix of the New York Islanders and Barry Smith of the Vancouver Canucks.
Ward resigned as head coach for Springfield, the American Hockey League affiliate of the Edmonton Oilers of the NHL and the Stockton Thunder of the ECHL. He was named the Falcons head coach on May 16, marking the third time that he was named head coach of Edmonton’s primary AHL affiliate having served as head coach of the Edmonton Road Runners in 2004-05 and the Toronto Roadrunners in 2003-04.
He coached in Germany in 2006-07 after being the Oilers development coach in 2005-06 when Edmonton came within one win of its sixth Stanley Cup Championship.
Ward began his career with the Oilers in January 2001 as an assistant coach with Hamilton of the AHL. He began the following season as an assistant, but was named head coach in January, following Claude Julien’s promotion to the Montreal Canadiens. Ward, who led the Bulldogs to the Calder Cup Finals where they lost in seven games, and Julien were named co-winners of the AHL Coach of the Year award.