On Tuesday afternoon, the Norfolk Admirals formally announced their coaching staff for the upcoming season. The Admirals and Ducks confirmed that Trent Yawney will be the head bench boss. Mike Haviland and Marty Wilford will round out the coaching staff. All three have strong ties to Norfolk. Yawney was Head Coach of the Admirals from 2000 until 2005 when the Admirals were affiliated with the Chicago Black Hawks. Haviland was Head Coach for two seasons before the Black Hawks uprooted from Norfolk and moved the affiliate to Rockford. Marty Wilford played defense under Trent Yawney’s guidance for three seasons.
Also present at the press conference was Anaheim Head Coach Bruce Boudreau and Admirals GM/Ducks Asst GM Bob Ferguson. Ferguson was eager to give praise “to what was done here last year with the win streak and the winning of the Calder Cup”. Bob noted, “that what happened last year may never happen in hockey again”. The Ducks Asst. GM also added that last year when there were rumors about their franchise moving to Norfolk “they definitely got excited”.
After Ferguson, Ducks Head Coach Boudreau took to the podium and said that “I know how great of a city Norfolk is and they have to compete in the strongest division in the American Hockey League”. Boudreau mentioned how happy he is to have a team in Norfolk and how enthusiastic the fans were here. Boudreau also added “we will have great players down here this year”.
When Admirals Head Coach Trent Yawney approached the podium, a fan in the seats quickly belted out “Welcome Home!” Yawney then proceed to tell the audience that the Ducks staff and their players are excited about the move to Norfolk. Trent also talked about how electric the atmosphere was when the Crunch played here in February. For about 2 weeks after that game, all his players talked about was how the fans were in Norfolk and how much fun those games were to play. The new Admirals coach mentioned that he talked to a couple of next year’s players and how ecstatic they were to showcase their talents in front of the Norfolk Admirals faithfuls. Yawney also acknowledged the standard of winning a Calder Cup and representing the City of Norfolk with class. Yawney assured that this will be a hard working team like Admirals fans are used to seeing night in and night out.
Mike Haviland took the podium for a brief statement. He said, “How great it is to be back in Norfolk”. Mike then reinforced what Yawney had mentioned “about putting a hard working team on the ice.” Mike also pointed out how grateful he was to be back in Norfolk.
Former Admiral, Marty Wilford, took the podium for brief comments. One comment he made referred to when his wife and he were coming over the Bridge it was like they never left. He also declared how grateful he is to have this opportunity in Norfolk.
Looking at the support and the resources that the Ducks Organization has given to the Admirals gives a glimmer of hope of another banner-raising season starting this fall. Lets Go Admirals!