Kent, WA – Seattle Thunderbirds general manager Russ Farwell today announced Steve Konowalchuk has been named the T-Birds new head coach. Konowalchuk becomes the 16th head coach in franchise history.

“We are excited to announce Steve as our new head coach,” said Farwell. “His recent experience both as a player and coach at the NHL level will help our players a great deal as they develop work towards their hockey goals. Steve was very respected as a player for his work ethic and the way he approached his career. I know he will bring this work ethic and enthusiasm as our head coach.”

Konowalchuk, 38, was an assistant coach with the Colorado Avalanche of the NHL the previous two seasons. He also was a member of the Avalanche player development department during the 2007-08 NHL season.

“The head coach position with the T-Birds is a great opportunity to have more of a hands on approach with a team,” said Konowalchuk. “I enjoy this age group and I am looking forward to working with the players to reach their goals of playing pro hockey. To reach those goals it will take skill development, commitment and an attitude for winning.”

Konowalchuk appeared in 790 games over 14 NHL seasons with the Washington Capitals and Avalanche, recording 171 goals and 225 assists for 396 points. Konowalchuk was selected by the Washington Capitals in the third round, 58th overall, in the 1991 NHL Entry Draft.

Konowalchuk played two seasons in the WHL with the Portland Winterhawks. He had 94 goals and 102 assists for 196 points in 136 games with the Winterhawks.

Steve and his wife, Leah, and their two children, Cara and Cole, are in the process of moving to the Seattle area.

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