After a successful stint as the team's Interim Head Coach during the 2nd half of the AHL Season last year, the Phoenix Coyotes Org. has officially announced that they will keep Ray Edwards as the head coach of the San Antonio Rampage going forward since he took over just before Thanksgiving last season.
In 59 games for the Rampage last season, he went an impressively 30-23-9 to get the Rampage back after a bad start to the season that Greg Ireland took them to.
Unfortunately his turnaround didn't help the team make the playoffs as the Rampage finished 7 points back of 4th Place Milwaukee in the West Division Last Season. He's going to have a tough job looking to turnaround a team that hasn't made the playoffs since 2008 where they lost to the Toronto Marlies in the opening round. In addition, the Rampage have never won a playoff series in their history going back to its current form in 2002.
From the San Antonio Rampage Website: www.sarampage.com
Phoenix Coyotes Assistant GM and GM of the San Antonio Rampage Brad Treliving announced today that the Phoenix Coyotes have officially named Ray Edwards as head coach of the Rampage, the Phoenix Coyotes AHL Affiliate. In addition, Treliving also announced that Jeff Truitt has been hired as an assistant coach.
Edwards, 40, helped guide the Rampage to a 30-23-9 record last season after being named interim head coach on November 23, 2009. Under Edwards leadership, San Antonio finished the 2009-2010 campaign tied with the Hershey Bears for the best PP % in the AHL at 20.7% and led the AHL in home power play percentage at 25.6%, both of which were franchise record.
In addition, he helped several of the Coyotes prospects shine include Kyle Turris and Brett Maclean. Turris collected 49 points (19G 30A) in his last 56 games and 32 points (13G 19A) in his last 30 games while Maclean registered 51 points (22G 29A) in his last 58 games.
Edwards, who changed the coaching staff as assistant coach on August 21, 2007, helped coached the Rampage to their most successful season in franchise history with 42 wins and 94 points during the 2007-08 campaign. Prior to joining the Rampage, Edwards coached in both the Central Hockey League (CHL) and the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) for seven seasons and guided the CHL's New Mexico Scorpions to the Conference Finals in the 2006-2007 season.
A native of Wasaga Beach, Ontario, Edwards began his coaching career at the age of 28 as one of the youngest coaches in professional hockey when he took the reins of the ECHL's Huntington Blizzard (WV) in 1998. The following season, he led the Blizzard to their most successful season with a 35-25-10 record.
As a player, Edwards recorded 174 points (83G 91A) and 1,253 PIM in 309 games over seven seasons in the ECHL. He attended National Hockey League Training Camps with Los Angeles, Chicago and Ottawa.
Truitt joins the Rampage after spending the 2009-2010 season as Director of Hockey Operations for the Moose Jaw Warriors of the Western Hockey League (WHL). Prior to working with the Warriors, Truitt spent the past two seasons in the AHL with the Springfield Falcons. On June 17, 2008 Truitt was promoted from assistant coach to head coach, becoming the 10th head coach in the history of the Falcons Franchise.
Truitt entered the pro ranks following an outstanding junior coaching career with the Kelowna Rockets (WHL). The native of Rosetown, Saskatchewan left Kelowna after seven seasons as a member of the team's coaching staff, including three seasons as head coach. Truitt joined the Rockets Staff in 2000-2001 and served four seasons (2000-2001 to 2003-2004) as an assistant coach.
In his three seasons as the Rockets Head Coach, Truitt complied a 113-76-27 record, winning one WHL Championship in and advancing to the Memorial Cup Tournament in 2005. During the 2004-2005 season, Truitt guided the Rockets to a 45-13-14 record and finished 2nd place in the league's BC Division, before going 16-8 in the post-season to win the WHL Championship. With the victory, Truitt and the Rockets advanced to their 3rd straight Memorial Cup Tournament.
During his seven seasons on the Rockets Coaching Staff, Truitt helped guide the Rockets Kelowna to 2 WHL Championships (2003, 2005), two WHL Regular Season Titles (2003, 2004), three straight trips to the Memorial Cup Tournament (2003, 2004 & 2005) and one Memorial Cup Championship.
Truitt also has international experience with Team Canada. He served as video coach for the Silver Medal Winning winning 2004 Canadian National Junior Team, was an assistant coach with Canada's Gold Medal Winning U18 Team in August 2006 in Slovakia and the Czech Republic, and most recently, he was an assistant coach with Canada's World U18 Team that placed 4th at the 2007 World U18 Championships in Finland.
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