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Seattle Kraken name Dan Bylsma as new head coach

Don’t know much about what he brings to the hockey rink? Here’s a brief history of the Stanley Cup-winning Dan Bylsma and his career so far.

This photo from 2009 shows Dan Bylsma waving a towel in the air, sporting a black shirt reading "Stanley Cup Champions" during his time coaching the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Bylsma earned the nickname “Disco Dan” during his time on the Los Angeles Kings because of his reputation for dancing in the locker room.

Photo by Andrew Crampton, via Wikimedia Commons

New head coach incoming — the Seattle Kraken announced that Dan Blysma would be taking over the role in a press release on Tuesday, May 28.

So, what has Bylsma accomplished in his two-decade career leading to this moment?

Bylsma’s background

After many years on the ice as a player — amateur and junior leagues, college hockey, five seasons with the Kings, and 95 AHL games — Bylsma started his coaching career with the Cincinnati Mighty Ducks.

Bylsma is best known for his stint coaching the Pittsburgh Penguins for its ’08-'09 season. The team was struggling to make the playoffs and relieved its head coach mid-season, subbing in Bylsma as interim head coach.

At the time, 38-year-old Bylsma was the youngest head coach in the NHL. In two months’ time, he was named head coach. Within another two months, Bylsma led the Pittsburgh Penguins to a Stanley Cup championship. He became the 14th coach and second mid-season replacement to win the Stanley Cup within their first season.

For the past two seasons, Bylsma worked as head coach for the Coachella Valley Firebirds (the Kraken’s top AHL affiliate) and led them back into the Calder Cup semifinals.

What’s Kraken?

Our NHL team’s staff, players, and fans see Bylsma’s potential for guiding the Kraken into the next season.

“Dan is a winner with a proven track record of developing both young and veteran talent, and his leadership will help our team as we move forward,” said the team’s General Manager Ron Francis.

For more on Bylsma’s track record, read Seattle Kraken’s full article.

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