Glens Falls, NY – The Adirondack Thunder, proud ECHL affiliate of the New Jersey Devils, announced this that head coach Brad Tapper has accepted a position on the Grand Rapids Griffins coaching staff and will not return to Adirondack next season.
Tapper led the Thunder to its first ever appearance in the Eastern Conference Finals in his first season as a head coach at the professional level. It was the first time that any Glens Falls-based team had reached that point in the postseason since the Adirondack Red Wings in the 1992 Calder Cup Playoffs.
“At the ECHL level, our role is to prepare players, coaches and staff to advance their careers and ultimately reach the National Hockey League,” General Manager Jeff Mead stated. “We are extremely proud that we were able to help Brad reach the next rung in his coaching career. He was the best hire we could have made for our inaugural season owning the franchise and what he and Coach Loh accomplished this season is nothing short of incredible. We wish Brad and his family the very best in his future.”
Tapper is the latest in a long line of Adirondack hockey head coaches to find success and advance their careers to a higher level. From Bill Dineen and Barry Melrose with the Adirondack Red Wings, to Cail MacLean and now Tapper with the Thunder, Adirondack hockey has had a rich and successful history with its head coaches and that tradition is not set to stop anytime soon.
“I could not have asked for more in my first season as a Head Coach,” Tapper said. “The Thunder is a first-class organization with incredible staff, players and a truly amazing fan base. I would like to thank Jeff Mead, Ed Moore and the Civic Center Coalition for the opportunity they gave me. I am excited to take the next step in my career to the American Hockey League, but me and my family will always remember fondly our time in Glens Falls. I wish nothing but the best for the Coalition, Coach Loh and the future of Adirondack Thunder hockey.”
The search for the next Head Coach of the Adirondack Thunder is underway. The rightful candidate will look to continue the progress the Thunder has seen under MacLean, Tapper and Associate Coach Alex Loh while building on the success of the 2017-2018 season. An announcement of the next Head Coach will be made in the near future.