(Originally published at Sports Radio Service)
The San Jose Sharks announced Thursday that they had hired Bob Boughner as assistant coach. They also confirmed that Johan Hedberg has been hired as assistant coach and goaltending coach. In a separate press release, the team announced that Wayne Thomas, a longtime executive and coach, is retiring.
New Sharks coach Peter DeBoer is very familiar with both new coaches. In the team’s press release, DeBoer said of Boughner:
He had a great career as an NHL player but also didn’t have any problem going back to juniors to hone his coaching ability. He has a great teaching ability from working with younger players in juniors and we’re very fortunate that he was available because he could have been working in this League a long time ago if he wanted to.
Boughner spent the past four seasons coaching the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires, and is also President and part owner of the team. In his OHL coaching career, he led his teams to back to back Memorial Cup and OHL championships and also coached the U-18 Canadian team to a gold medal in the 2009 World Championships. He was briefly an assistant coach with the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2010-11.
Johan Hedberg worked directly with DeBoer, as a player, a scout and an assistant coach. Of Hedberg, DeBoer said:
He was a student of the game for his whole career and having been around him every day in our years in New Jersey, it was evident that coaching is something that came naturally to him. His willingness to go to the American League last season and learn the coaching trade speaks volumes for his commitment to coaching.
Hedberg arrives as his predecessors, Wayne Thomas and goaltending development coach Corey Schwab depart.
Thomas spent 22 years with the Sharks organization, 19 seasons as assistant general manager, and 14 as vice-president. He also served as goaltending coach and supervised goaltender development for the club. In all, his hockey career spanned 45 years, as player (243 games over nine seasons), coach and executive. He was also general manager of the Sharks’ AHL team in Worcester. In the Sharks press release, Thomas said:
“I am very proud to have been a part of this organization and its accomplishments,” said Thomas. “My only regret is not being part of a group that brought a Cup to San Jose. After 22 years of being part of the Hockey Operations of the Sharks, it is time to spend a little more time being a husband, father and grandfather.”
Per a report from the Mercury News, Corey Schwab will also not be returning to the Sharks. Schwab spent seven seasons coaching goaltenders in both Worcester and San Jose.