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Lamb Eager to Develop AHL Players in Tucson

by Dave Vest / Arizona Coyotes

TUCSON – Tucson Roadrunners Head Coach Mark Lamb faced the media in the team’s new home city on Wednesday and told reporters he’s excited to lead the Coyotes’ American Hockey League affiliate into a new era.

“There’s a lot of skill in the organization,” Lamb said. “…Everybody talks about (Dylan) Strome and (Christian) Dvorak, and they’re probably the two main pieces to the big puzzle, but there’s a lot more talent than that. There’s a lot of good players throughout the organization … I think in time the organization is going to be very proud of those guys when it all gets put together, and it basically starts here.”

Mark Lamb. Photo by Norm Hall.

Lamb’s coaching resume includes six seasons as an assistant to Coyotes Head Coach Dave Tippett when Tippett was behind the bench in Dallas from 2002-09. His knowledge regarding how Tippett coaches is expected to serve both teams well.

A reporter asked Lamb if fans should expect to see him yelling and screaming during games. Lamb joked that he would, but mostly at the referees.

“I’m pretty laid back,” Lamb said. “I think if a coach starts yelling and screaming all the time you’re taking away from what you’re supposed to be doing on the bench. I’ll be an honest, hard-working coach who really communicates with my players and with the assistant coaches.”

Mark Hardy will serve as Lamb’s primary assistant coach, and Corey Schwab will handle the goalies.

Hardy also coached with Tippett; both were assistants with the Los Angeles Kings under Andy Murray from 1999-2002.

“’Tip’ gave me a call and I jumped at the opportunity,” Hardy said when asked about joining the Roadrunners staff. “We’re going to have a great crew down here and we’re going to be developing young hockey players here, which we’ve done over the years. I think that’s our forte and it’s something that we’re very excited about.”

The Coyotes purchased the Springfield Falcons in April and moved them to Tucson soon after to strengthen the relationship between the Coyotes and their primary affiliate. The Roadrunners will play their home games at the Tucson Convention center starting this October.

“I’ve never been on a brand new team before, but it’s going to take a lot of work by a lot of different people,” Lamb said. “The business staff, the hockey staff, everybody has to really work together to make it successful.”

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