OTTAWA — On September 3, the Ottawa 67’s of the Ontario Hockey League announced that Brian Kilrea, their head coach and general manager, will step down as head coach after the 2008-09 season and will be replaced by current assistant coach Chris Bryne.
Kilrea, 73, enters his 32nd season as head coach of the 67’s. During that time, his teams have won two Memorial Cups (Canadian Hockey League Championships), three OHL championships and nine divisional titles.
Kilrea, who was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in the Builders category in 2002, has coached 2,088 games and has won 1,153 games—both are records for hockey coaches.
“I always knew this day would come and I never looked forward to it,” said 67’s Owner and Governor, Jeff Hunt. “Brian Kilrea, more then any other person, is the face of the Ottawa 67’s, behind the bench and in the community.”
“He has spoiled me and our fans by delivering Memorial Cups, OHL championships and exciting teams year after year,” added Hunt. “We have had an unbelievable relationship and I’m fortunate that it will continue with Brian as General Manager.”
Kilrea, a 5-11, 182-pound center, spent the vast majority of his playing career in the minor leagues, including seven seasons with the Springfield Americans of the American Hockey League. He also played in 25 games for the Los Angeles Kings in their inaugural 1967-68 season, scoring three goals with five assists for eight points with twelve penalty minutes.
Photo courtesy Ottawa 67’s.
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