Who will coach Hounds?

Randy Russon
June 6, 2018

Drew Bannister has moved up to the minor pro level after three successful seasons as head coach of the Soo Greyhounds. With the bench boss position with the Ontario Hockey League Greyhounds vacant, Soo general manager Kyle Raftis is in position to choose from what should be a choice crop of potential replacements.

Here are a few coaches among the many who could possibly, potentially and realistically be of interest to Raftis.

Bobby Jones. Like Bannister, Jones is a former Greyhound defenseman and captain. The 48-year old Jones is also a former OHL assistant coach with the Greyhounds, Windsor Spitfires, Sudbury Wolves, Brampton Battalion and Toronto St. Michael’s Majors. And he has also had winning seasons as an OHL head coach with Windsor and just recently, the Oshawa Generals.

David Matsos. Another former Greyhound player, Matsos was a 1993 Memorial Cup championship teammate of Bannister with the Greyhounds. He also has extensive OHL coaching experience as a head coach in Sudbury and as an assistant with both Windsor and the 2018 league champion Hamilton Bulldogs.

Joe Cirella. The 55-year old Cirella has been an OHL assistant for more than a dozen years with both Oshawa and the Soo. But does the long-time Greyhound assistant even have aspirations of being a head coach?

John Parco. A Sault Ste. Marie native and former OHL star with the Belleville Bulls, the 46-year old Parco coached the Soo Thunderbirds of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League this past season after years of championship bench success at the pro level in Italy.

Jason Fortier. Another Soo boy, the 43-year old Fortier has experience and success as a head coach in the Ontario Jr. Hockey League and British Columbia Hockey League and as an assistant with the Kitchener Rangers of the OHL and the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies of the Quebec Major Jr. Hockey League.

What you think about “Who will coach Hounds?”

  1. Bring an outsider in. There is enough politics in the sport let alone bringing in local product. He knows someone that knows someone blah blah blah!!!

  2. I would hope the Hounds hire a coach who’s committed to the puck possession style. The Keefe-Bannister eras have been highly entertaining, and I dare say when the Hounds started playing that way, the rest of the league – and even the pros – followed suit. It’s obviously helped on the recruiting front. As for the assistant coaching staff, I was not impressed with the way the Hounds performed in their own end, and it caught up to them in the end. Here’s hoping Kyle Raftis makes an inspired hire.

  3. Jason has proven to change culture , and bring out the best in his players. Definitely time to bring him home

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