Club news

Weber departs Blaze

Genting Casino Coventry Blaze are to have a new face behind the team bench next season after confirming that Chuck Weber will not be returning to the club for the 2016/17 season.

The 43-year-old American arrived on a short-term contract mid-way through the 2014/15 season and guided the club to the Elite League Play Off Championship. He returned for a second campaign last season and once again took the club to the Play Off Final before falling at the final hurdle to the Nottingham Panthers.

“We knew all along that Chuck was likely to only be with us until the end of the season,” said Blaze Director of Hockey, James Pease. “Although he came to us with great experience, in terms of his coaching career, he is still a young man and we knew that he wanted to continue to grow and develop as a coach through working in lots of different environments, countries and leagues. Coventry Blaze is only a tiny dot on the global hockey map and there is so much out there for him to experience and learn from so he can become the best coach he can possibly be.

“We were delighted that he came back to do a full season after our Play Off success and it has been a pleasure working with him,” continued Pease. “We have learned a lot from him but equally importantly, I think Chuck will be the first to admit that he has learned a lot from us. It’s a relationship that has come to its natural conclusion for the time being but who knows what may happen in the future. We part on the very best of terms and we wish him nothing but success and job satisfaction in his next role.”

Chuck Weber commented, “I want to say a big thank you to the ownership team for having given me this wonderful opportunity at the Blaze. It’s a fantastic club and my family and I have been welcomed and looked after from the moment we arrived in the UK. I have been given tremendous support from the fans here and Coventry Blaze will always have a special place in my heart.

“It’s the natural time for both the club and myself to go our separate ways for now but you never know what may happen. I shall certainly continue to help and support the club in any way I can and I shall be keeping an eye on results and how the club is doing.”

Pease concluded, “We’ve known for a few weeks that we would be looking to appoint a new Head Coach, although we decided collectively with Chuck that we wouldn’t announce anything until he returned from international duty so he could focus on his work with the Great Britain team.  Now the international focus is over, we will be announcing imminently who will be taking over from Chuck at the Blaze and we once again thank him for his tremendous contribution to our organisation.”