Macdonald Named Assistant Coach in Grand Rapids
Cincinnati, OH- The Cincinnati Cyclones, in conjunction with the American Hockey League's (AHL) Grand Rapids Griffins, have announced that Cyclones Head Coach Matt Macdonald has been named assistant coach for the Griffins; AHL affiliate of the National Hockey League's (NHL) Detroit Red Wings. Macdonald joins the staff of former Cyclones head coach Ben Simon, who was named the bench boss in Grand Rapids earlier this month.
"I want to thank Ray Harris, Kristin Ropp, and the rest of the Cincinnati Cyclones organization for a near decade-long career with the Cyclones," remarked Macdonald. "From winning a championship here as a player, to returning as an assistant coach and ultimately assuming the role of head coach, Cincinnati has become home to me, and the Cyclones organization have become a second family. I will never forget my time and the great memories that were made here."
A native of Niagara Falls, ON, Macdonald just wrapped up his fourth season as Cyclones head coach where he led the 'Clones to a 39-30-3-0 record and a third-place finish in the ECHL's Central Division. The Cyclones ultimately fell to the Ft. Wayne Komets in the opening round of the Kelly Cup Playoffs, 4 games to 1.
Overall, Macdonald compiled an overall record of 142-116-16-14 with the Cyclones, and led Cincinnati to the playoffs in two of his four seasons as head coach. He celebrated his 100th career coaching victory on March 15, 2017 with a 2-1 win over the Alaska Aces, and he also eclipsed 30 wins in each of his four seasons behind the bench. Macdonald also served as an assistant coach for the Cyclones from 2012-14, helping Cincinnati to back-to-back Eastern Conference Finals appearances, and a trip to the Kelly Cup Finals in 2014 under Simon.
"It has been gratifying seeing the evolution of Matt's career with us in Cincinnati- from Kelly Cup-winning player, to assistant coach, to head coach, and I am thrilled to see Matt progress to the next level in his hockey career," said Cyclones Vice President and General Manager Kristin Ropp. "He is a perfect example of the ECHL model in motion as he advances through the professional ranks, and personally, I will miss him and his family. They were an important part of our hockey and family culture in Cincinnati."
As a player, Macdonald spent parts of three seasons in the Queen City, logging 119 regular season games and tallying 44 points (5g, 39a). He also accounted for five goals and nine assists in 44 Kelly Cup Playoff games, and was a member of Cincinnati's first-ever Kelly Cup title in 2008. He served as an assistant captain during that season, as well.
In addition to his ECHL experience, Macdonald also saw time in the AHL, Central Hockey League (CHL), and in Denmark. Collectively, he skated in 385 games as a professional and collected 133 points (30g, 103a) with 732 career penalty minutes. Prior to turning pro, Macdonald was a four-year letter winner at St. Lawrence University, where he totaled 30 points (14g, 16a) and 131 penalty minutes in 118 career collegiate games.
A search for a new head coach of the Cincinnati Cyclones will begin immediately.
The 2017-18 season has come to a close, and the march towards 2018 First Face-off is ON! The Cincinnati Cyclones want to thank you for all of your support this past season, and invite you to stay tuned in the coming weeks and months for information on tickets and promotions for the 2018-19 season, great offseason events like Concrete Clones, player signings, and MORE! Call (513) 421-PUCK for information regarding your Cyclones, and you can also get the latest team updates on Facebook, Twitter (@CincyCyclones), and Instagram, along with our website, www.cycloneshockey.com!
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