Tampa Bay Lightning hires Wayne Fleming as an assistant coach to be behind the bench
The Tampa Bay Lightning filled out its coaching staff on Friday by hiring Wayne Fleming, who joins his sixth NHL team in his 11th year as an assistant. He joins previously hired Daniel Lacroix and Martin Raymond, both of whom coached last season with new Lightning coach Guy Boucher at AHL Hamilton.
Hiring Fleming gives the staff a seasoned, league-wise coach. That is important as neither Boucher or Raymond have any NHL experience. Lacroix was an assistant with the Islanders. The assignments will shake out this way: Fleming will be benhind the bench and run the penalty kill; Lacroix also will be behind the bench and run the defense; Raymond, generally, will be in the press box as the team's eye in the sky.
Fleming was an assistant with the Oilers last season but was pushed out when coach Pat Quinn was kicked upstairs and Tom Renney took over. Before that he coached Avangard Omsk of Russia's Kontinental Hockey League, leaving mid-season by mutaul agreement when, as Fleming said at the time, it just wasn't working out. He also was an assistant with the Flames, Coyotes, Flyers and Islanders.
Here is the announcement from the team:
The Tampa Bay Lightning have named Wayne Fleming to the position of assistant coach today, Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced. Fleming brings more than 30 years of coaching experience, both internationally and at the NHL level, most recently with the Edmonton Oilers.
"Wayne is a well-known person in the world of hockey," Lightning Head Coach Guy Boucher said. "He has an extensive resume both in the NHL and internationally. Wayne brings new information, ideas and a wealth of professional and NHL experience. He is familiar with a number of our current players, having previously coached Lecavalier, St. Louis and others. I needed someone with experience as well as an open mind and he certainly fits that perfectly. I think he’s the perfect fit for our staff.
"Along with Daniel Lacroix and Martin Raymond, there are three key traits that these three gentlemen have in common. They care about people, they have tremendous enthusiasm and their work ethic is unsurpassed."
Fleming has extensive NHL experience, serving as an assistant for 10 seasons with the New York Islanders, Phoenix Coyotes, Philadelphia Flyers, Calgary Flames and the Oilers. He spent last season in Edmonton where he was an assistant to Head Coach Pat Quinn.
Prior to joining the Oilers coaching staff, Fleming served as the Head Coach for the Avangard Omsk of the Kontinental Hockey League in Russia for the 2008-09 season. Before going to Russia, Fleming served as an assistant coach with the Calgary Flames from 2006-08. In 2008, he was reassigned to assistant coach – development. From 2002-06 Fleming served as an assistant coach with the Philadelphia Flyers, helping them compile a 130-67-39-10 record during that time.
A native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Fleming also served as an assistant coach with the Phoenix Coyotes during the 1999-00 season and with the New York Islanders for two seasons from 1997-99. Before joining the Islanders he served as head coach for Landshut of the German Elite League during the 1996-97 season and spent four seasons with Leksand of the Swedish Elite League from 1992-96.
Fleming has a long resume of international experience. He served as associate coach for Team Canada at the 2004 World Cup of Hockey and the 2006 Winter Olympic Games. Fleming also served as vice president of hockey operations and head coach for Hockey Canada. In that role he served as the head coach for Team Canada at the 2001 and 2002 IIHF World Championships as well as serving as associate coach and winning the Gold Medal at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City.
Beginning his coaching career at the University of Manitoba in 1980, Fleming went on to coach nine seasons with the Bison. He led them to Great Plains Athletic Conference Championships during the 1983-84 and 1984-95 seasons and won the Father George Kehoe Memorial Award as the Canadian Interuniversity Athletic Union Coach of the Year in 1985. Fleming compiled a 140-78-14 record in 232 regular season games with the Bison.