West Valley City, Utah – Utah Grizzlies CEO Kevin Bruder announced today that the team has given Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations Kevin Colley a multi-year contract extension. Terms of the deal will not be disclosed.
During the 2008-2009 season, Colley, 30, led the Grizzlies to the organization’s third playoff appearance in four years with the team in constant transition. 15 total players were called-up to six different AHL teams. Joel Rechlicz and Peter Mannino also played in the NHL with the Islanders this season after spending time with the Grizzlies.
“Kevin somehow kept our team in playoff contention and at .500 or better this season through an unbelievable amount of injuries and call-ups. It was not easy and again he showed us what he is made of as a human being,” said Bruder. “He is one of the premier young coaches in hockey and will take us far while also continuing to develop our players for the next level.”
Colley, a year-round resident of Draper, Utah, joined the Grizzlies as an Assistant Coach prior to the 2007-2008 season and was part of the team’s 2008 conference finals run. On September 4, he was named the youngest Head Coach in the ECHL when Jason Christie took a position with the AHL’s Chicago Wolves.
“Our goal every year is to win the Kelly Cup,” said Colley. “While we are proud of everything we fought through this year, we did not meet our ultimate goal and the 2009-2010 season starts today. I have had two great years in Utah and am anxious to keep going with my first full summer of recruiting.”
Colley played in the ECHL from 1999-2003 and was named MVP of the 2003 Kelly Cup Playoffs as the Atlantic City Boardwalk Bullies captured the Kelly Cup. He was also named an ECHL All-Star in 2003. In the AHL, he was named captain of the Bridgeport Sound Tigers before making his NHL debut on October 27, 2005 for the Islanders. His playing career was cut short on January 31, 2006, when he suffered a broken neck and fractured his fifth cervical vertebrae in a game for the Islanders versus Washington.