Calgary Flames Announce the Hiring of Associate Coach Geoff Ward and Assistant Coach Ryan Huska
Calgary, AB - The Calgary Flames announced today that Geoff Ward and Ryan Huska will join Bill Peters' staff to work alongside existing coaches Martin Gelinas, Jamie Pringle and Jordan Sigalet.
Geoff Ward joins the Flames after spending the past three seasons with the New Jersey Devils, as their assistant coach, while Ryan Huska joins the Flames staff after serving as the head coach in Stockton for three seasons and one in Adirondack, Calgary's AHL affiliate.
Ward, a native of Waterloo, Ontario, brings a decade of NHL coaching experience to the Flames. Prior to the last three years with New Jersey, he served as the Boston Bruins assistant coach for seven seasons including winning the Stanley Cup in 2011 and another finals appearance in 2013.
The 56-year-old started his coaching career as an assistant at the University of Waterloo in 1989 and remained there for three years. In 1993-94, he guided the Waterloo Siskins to a MWJHL championship. In 1994-95 he signed on as the head coach of the OHL's Kitchener Rangers for four seasons and finished his OHL coaching career as the head coach with the Guelph Storm in 1998-99. Following that, he spent one year coaching in the East Coast League as the head coach of Arkansas in 1999-00. He moved on to the AHL as an assistant in Hamilton and later became the head coach guiding them to the Calder Cup Finals in 2002-03 and was named as the Louis A.R. Pieri AHL coach of the year recipient. He finished his AHL coaching career as head coach of the Edmonton Roadrunners in 2004-05 after the team moved from Toronto. He has also been a head coach in Germany on three separate occasions (2000-01, 2006-07 and 2014-15) including winning the DEL Championship and being named coach of the year with Adler Mannheim in 2014-15 before returning to the NHL.
Huska, a native of Cranbrook, BC, has been coaching for 16 years after a nine year playing career in the WHL, IHL and AHL, including one NHL game with the Chicago Blackhawks.
The 42-year-old Huska was originally drafted by Chicago in the third round of the 1993 NHL Draft. He played four years with the Western Hockey League's Kamloops Blazers where he won three Memorial Cups in 1992, 1994 and 1995. After his junior career, he spent three seasons with the IHL's Indianapolis Ice, one year with the AHL's Lowell Lock Monsters and concluded his playing career in the AHL with Springfield in 1999-00 accumulating over 300 professional games. He started his coaching career back in the WHL as an assistant for the Kelowna Rockets from 2002-07 before being named the head coach from 2007-14 where he won his fourth Memorial Cup in 2004. He was named as the Flames AHL affiliate head coach in Adirondack in 2014-15 before the team moved to its current location in Stockton where he has been the bench boss for the last three seasons. Internationally Huska has twice been an assistant coach with Team Canada at the IIHF World Junior Championship capturing silver and bronze medals.
Geoff Ward and his wife Carolyn have two sons Cody and Sawyer, and two daughters Kylie and Hannah. Ryan Huska and his wife Denise have one son Luke and daughters, Hanna and Olivia.
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