Stanley Cup winner Wayne Smith has been named the first head coach of the new Laredo Bucks, a member of the USA Central Hockey League.
Smith played the game at a high level beginning with the Gloucester Jr. Rangers where he was a top player and received a full athletic scholarship to play at the University of Minnesota-Duluth. After a season at UMD, Smith had a burning desire to play in the Ontario Hockey League and he finished his Junior career with the London Knights, one of the top teams in Major Junior hockey.
After his playing career he soon found a great passion for scouting and evaluating talent, a role where he really made his mark in the game. He began his scouting career with the Kingston Frontenacs (OHL) and in a very short time he was elevated to Director of Player Personnel.
In 1999 Smith accepted a full time scouting position with the Columbus Blue Jackets (NHL). During this time, Wayne was asked to evaluate players from all over the world from a variety of leagues and hockey playing environments.
His next scouting job would be with the Boston Bruins (NHL) beginning in 2006. After two seasons Smith was named Director of Scouting, one of only 31 people in the world to hold this position. His responsibilities included preparing and running the NHL Amateur Draft, working with the General Manager when asked regarding trades and free agent signings.
His hard work paid off with Smith being a member of the 2011 Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins. He now is one of the few people to have his name etched on the top trophies in all of professional sports!
Upon being named the head coach of the Laredo Bucks, Smith immediately began searching for future Laredo Bucks players all over the world, utilizing his contacts to put together a championship caliber team.
Smith is extremely excited for the opportunity saying, "this is another great challenge to not only put together a great team in Laredo, but also a tremendous opportunity to help develop the USACHL into one of the best Junior leagues in North America!"
Terry Christensen, USA CHL Vice President / Director of Hockey Operations was ecstatic to land Wayne Smith to be Head Coach, Director of Player Personnel saying, “any time you can attract someone to the USA CHL that has the hockey knowledge and contacts that Wayne Smith has, it is a win win for all of us. The great hockey fans and sponsors in the Laredo area will be very happy with the on-ice product that Wayne and his staff will put together!"
The USA Central Hockey League will hold its second tryout camp August 17-19 in Chicago, Illinois. For more information on our upcoming tryout camps, please CLICK HERE.
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