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Sommer sets AHL record for games coached

Wednesday, 03.26.2014 / 8:05 PM / AHL Update

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Sommer sets AHL record for games coached
Worcester Sharks coach Roy Sommer established an American Hockey League (AHL) record for most regular-season games coached Wednesday.

Roy Sommer established an American Hockey League record for most regular-season games coached when he led the Worcester Sharks against the Portland Pirates on Wednesday.

The game was Sommer's 1,257th as an AHL coach, surpassing the mark held by Hockey Hall of Fame member Frank Mathers.

Sommer, 56, was named coach of the San Jose Sharks’ AHL affiliate on May 28, 1998, and has spent his entire 16-year coaching career in the Sharks organization with the Kentucky Thoroughblades (1998-2001), Cleveland Barons (2001-06) and Worcester Sharks (2006-present). He earned his 572nd regular-season victory, fourth all-time among AHL coaches, when Worcester beat Portland 5-3.

The native of Oakland, Calif., has led San Jose's AHL affiliates to six 40-win seasons and three division championships. He has coached 104 players who have gone on to play in the NHL, including 80 who have spent a portion of their careers with San Jose. In all, 18 players who have dressed for San Jose this season played for Sommer in the AHL.

Prior to his coaching career, Sommer played 10 seasons of professional hockey after being drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1977. He scored a goal in his NHL debut with the Edmonton Oilers on Jan. 28, 1981, and won a Calder Cup championship as a member of the AHL's Maine Mariners in 1984.

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[He's] real confident with the puck now, getting it off his stick quick and no second-guessing. We need that. He's such a good guy in the room. He works so hard. That's the big thing. For not a big man, he just fights for every puck and when he scores, the guys appreciate that even more.

— Winnipeg Jets coach Paul Maurice on Mathieu Perreault, who scored two goals in win against Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday