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Americans, Steve Martinson, Agree to Contract Extension

June 18, 2021 - ECHL (ECHL) - Allen Americans News Release

Allen, TEXAS - The Allen AMERICANS Professional Hockey Club is pleased to announce that Head Coach & General Manager Steve Martinson and the club have agreed to a contract extension.

The AMERICANS begin play in the best of five game 2021 ECHL Kelly Cup Western Conference Finals on Friday, June 18 at 7:05 pm CT against the Fort Wayne Komets.

This is the AMERICANS 7th playoff appearance in Martinson's nine seasons as the club's head coach, where the veteran bench boss has tallied 361 regular season wins in 626 games in Allen.

"We're excited to have Coach Martinson continue leading our hockey operations with the Allen AMERICANS," shares team owner Jack D. Gulati. "Steve is synonymous with winning hockey, and puts us in position every year to compete for the ECHL Kelly Cup Championship. The name of the game is winning, which has been the hallmark of professional hockey in Allen since our founding in 2009, and continues to be so moving forward."

"I am happy to continue my coaching career with the AMERICANS, in a place where we have enjoyed lots of success," adds Steve Martinson. "I've been here nine years and have never been more excited about the future of this organization than I am now. Pro Hockey in Allen is the total package, from the North Texas region, to our fans, it's the best market in the ECHL. I look forward to making a run at what will be our 5th championship in 9 seasons, and continuing to represent this organization, and our ownership, moving forward."

Martinson was named head coach of the Americans on June 4, 2012 and has led the Amercians to four championships in his nine years in the #CityofChampions, capturing Central Hockey League (CHL) President's Cups in 2013 & 2014 followed by a pair of ECHL Kelly Cup Championships in 2015 and 2016.

This season, Martinson led the Americans to an ECHL-best 45 wins en route to the team securing the Western Conference Regular Season Championship. He was named the ECHL General Manager of the Year in the covid shortened 2019-20 season as the AMERICANS tallied a Western Conference best 88 points prior to the season being cancelled in early March.

Martinson's overall coaching record is 1088-507-166, in 1,761 games coached, ranking him first in all-time wins for an American-born professional hockey coach. He needs 156 wins to eclipse Scotty Bowman (1,244) as pro hockey's all-time winningest coach.

A native of Minnetonka, Minn, Martinson played professionally for 12 years spanning from 1981-96. He played in 50 games in the National Hockey League, skating for parts of four seasons with the Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens and Minnesota North Stars.

Martinson began his coaching career in 1996 with the San Diego Gulls of the WCHL, where he coached for nine seasons and over 600 games and won five championships. During his ECHL expansion season in 2003-04 with San Diego, his club set a league record for most points by an expansion team with 100 points. In 2004 Martinson joined Rockford of the UHL, where he later won a championship with the IceHogs during the 2006-07 season. In his 25 years of coaching, Martinson has failed to reach the postseason only twice.

During his playing days Martinson was a tough, gritty defenseman, racking up more than 3,000 penalty minutes over a 14-year career. He holds the single season American Hockey League mark for most major penalties in a season with 49, set in 1985-86. Off the ice, Martinson earned his Business Management degree in 1981, from St. Cloud State University.

Martinson and his wife, Michelle, are proud parents of Logan (21), a student at the University of Houston, and Lily (19) who will be beginning her collegiate hockey career this Fall at Providence College.

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