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Cincinnati's Thomas Receives John Brophy Award as ECHL Coach of the Year

April 9, 2019 - ECHL (ECHL) News Release

PRINCETON, N.J. - The ECHL on Tuesday announced that Matt Thomas of the Cincinnati Cyclones is the 2018-19 recipient of the John Brophy Award as the league's Coach of the Year.

The John Brophy Award is the trophy presented annually to the ECHL coach selected to have contributed the most to his team's success as selected in a vote of league coaches. The trophy is named for John Brophy, who won a record three ECHL titles with Hampton Roads in 1991, 1992 and 1998, and was inducted into the ECHL Hall of Fame in 2009.

Rob Murray of Tulsa finished second in the voting, followed by Florida' Brad Ralph, Neil Graham of Idaho and Newfoundland's John Snowden.

The winner of the Defenseman of the Year award will be announced on Wednesday.

Thomas led the Cyclones to the Brabham Cup title as ECHL regular-season champions with a 51-13-8 record for 110 points. Cincinnati went 30-2-4 at home, tying the ECHL record for most home wins and fewest regulation losses in a single season, while the Cyclones' Central Division championship marked their first division title since 2012-13. Thomas also served as a coach for the 2019 CCM/ECHL All-Star Classic, marking his third All-Star appearance, tying the most All-Star coaching assignments in ECHL history.

Thomas returned to the ECHL this season after serving as head coach at the University of Alaska-Anchorage for the previous five seasons. He has amassed a career ECHL regular-season record of 393-238-88 in 10 seasons with Atlantic City, Fresno, Stockton and Cincinnati. He ranks seventh in ECHL history in regular-season wins, while he is the league's all-time leader with 97 postseason games coached and is tied for third with 49 playoff wins.

John Brophy Award Winners (ECHL Coach of the Year)

2018-19 Matt Thomas, Cincinnati Cyclones

2017-18 Brad Ralph, Florida Everblades

2016-17 Dan Watson, Toledo Walleye

2015-16 Richard Matvichuk, Missouri Mavericks

2014-15 Derek Lalonde, Toledo Walleye

2013-14 Spencer Carbery, South Carolina Stingrays

2012-13 Jarrod Skalde, Cincinnati Cyclones

2011-12 Rob Murray, Alaska Aces and John Wroblewski, Gwinnett Gladiators

2010-11 Brent Thompson, Alaska Aces

2009-10 Derek Laxdal, Idaho Steelheads

2008-09 Rick Kowalsky, Trenton Devils

2007-08 Chuck Weber, Cincinnati Cyclones

2006-07 Davis Payne, Alaska Aces

2005-06 Glen Gulutzan, Las Vegas Wranglers

2004-05 Nick Vitucci, Toledo Storm

2003-04 Pat Bingham, Wheeling Nailers

2002-03 Claude Noel, Toledo Storm

2001-02 Dave Farrish, Louisiana Ice Gators

2000-01 Troy Ward, Trenton Titans

1999-00 Bob Ferguson, Florida Everblades

1998-99 Bob Ferguson, Florida Everblades

1997-98 Chris Nilan, Chesapeake IceBreakers

1996-97 Brian McCutcheon, Columbus Chill

1995-96 Roy Sommer, Richmond Renegades

1994-95 Jim Playfair, Dayton Bombers

1993-94 Barry Smith, Knoxville Cherokees

1992-93 Kurt Kleinendorst, Raleigh IceCaps

1991-92 Doug Sauter, Winston-Salem Thunderbirds

1990-91 Don Jackson, Knoxville Cherokees

1989-90 Dave Allison, Virginia Lancers

1988-89 Ron Hansis, Erie Panthers


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