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Assistant Coach John Gurskis Accepts Head Coaching Position In Knoxville

Friday, June 21st
Assistant Coach John Gurskis Accepts Head Coaching Position In Knoxville

WICHITA, Kan. (June 21) – The Wichita Thunder, ECHL affiliate of the NHL's San Jose Sharks, AHL's San Jose Barracuda and powered by Toyota, are excited to announce that Assistant Coach John Gurskis has accepted the Head Coaching position with the SPHL's Knoxville Ice Bears. 

"I would like to thank the organization for five great seasons in Wichita," commented Gurskis.  "I can't thank the good people of Wichita enough for all of their support.   To Rammer and all of the players we coached, thank you from the bottom of my heart for making it fun to come to the rink. As I've learned so many times in this game, it's never goodbye only see you later.   Love you guys."

Gurskis just completed his fifth season as an assistant coach for the Thunder. A native of Brockton, Massachusetts, he came on board as the team's assistant in 2019-20 when Bruce Ramsay was hired as the Head Coach of the Thunder. Gurskis helped lead one of the best power play units over the last two seasons, finishing in the top 10 both years. This will be his first Head Coaching position. 

"I want to congratulate John on a well-deserved promotion as a head coach," commented Head Coach Bruce Ramsay. "I can't say enough about John as a person and a hockey mind. He works extremely hard and knows how to connect with players. I'm very happy for him and I know he will do a great job in Knoxville."

He returns to the SPHL, where he played and served as a Player/Assistant Coach for four seasons with the Macon Trax, Florida Seals, Pee Dee Cyclones and Twin City Cyclones. 

"John invested a lot of years with the Thunder as a player and coach and we're happy for him," stated General Manager Joel Lomurno. "He works hard, is loved by his players and teammates and will excel at this new opportunity!"

Gurskis played for the Thunder for two seasons and was a teammate of Ramsay during the 2000-01 campaign. 

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