June 24,2014(ISN) – The Kelowna Rockets are pleased to announce they have promoted Dan Lambert from
Assistant Coach to Head Coach in the wake of Ryan Huska’s hiring by the Calgary
Lambert has been a Rockets Assistant Coach for the past five seasons and will take
over as the franchise’s eighth head coach with Huska moving on as the head coach of
the Flames’ AHL team in Adirondack.
“This is a great day for our organization,” said Rockets President/GM Bruce
Hamilton. “This is an opportunity Ryan has deserved for many years. He’s done a
wonderful job for us and we will be his biggest fans.”
“I can recall when I first met Dan Lambert. We wanted to hire someone who would be
capable of taking over when Ryan’s term came to an end. I couldn’t be happier or
more satisfied that Dan is fully prepared to be our head coach,” said Hamilton.
For the past five seasons, Lambert has been Huska’s top assistant. A star defenceman
as a player, Lambert is one of the best blueliners ever to play in the WHL, winning
a Memorial Cup with Swift Current in 1989 before moving on to a 19 year professional
career, playing in the NHL with Quebec and in Germany’s top league the DEL.
“To get an opportunity to be a head coach of the Kelowna Rockets is a great honour,”
said Lambert. “I certainly have some big shoes to fill but I’m going to look at this
as a challenge. This is an exciting day, not only for myself but for my whole
As for Huska, the Cranbrook native departs the Rockets with 303 regular season wins
under his belt in his seven year run as Rockets head coach. His team’s never
finished below .500, he won a WHL championship, two BC Division banners and set back
to back franchise records for wins with 52 and 57 the past two seasons.
“The most important thing for me was the people I worked with and getting the
opportunity to be part of the team,” said Huska. “I will always be grateful for the
opportunity I was given from the Kelowna Rockets.”
The hiring process for a new Rockets assistant coach is now underway.