Photo Credit: Winnipeg Sun

The Victoria Royals Hockey Club announced today that the team has named James Patrick as Head Coach.

Patrick joins the club after 6 seasons with the Winnipeg ICE franchise. The product of Winnipeg, MB, has a history of success in the WHL. He was named the Head Coach of the Kootenay ICE ahead of the 2017-18 season. As the team relocated to Winnipeg from Kootenay, Patrick helped the team boast a 166-49-8 record over their four seasons in the Manitoba capital. Patrick was named the WHL Coach of the Year during the ICE’s 2021-22 season as he led the team to a 53-10-5 record and to the Conference Finals. The ICE would follow up that success the following season as they reached the WHL Championship in 2022-23. He also played an instrumental role in the development of five first round NHL draft picks in his six seasons coaching the ICE franchise.

“We are very excited to have James lead our program.” Said Vice President of Hockey Operations Joey Poljanowski. “He brings a winning pedigree and has had tremendous success in developing both strong organizational cultures and future NHL players.”

“James brings a professional, detailed approach to the rink each and every day.” Said Associate GM Jake Heisinger. “We are confident he is the right person to lead our program and we know he will do a great job developing our players and our team.”

Professionally, Patrick was a mainstay in the NHL between 1983 and 2004 as he appeared in nearly 1,300 games split between the New York Rangers, Hartford Whalers, Calgary Flames and Buffalo Sabres where he would accumulate 639 points over his time in the NHL. Following his playing career in the NHL, he was announced as the assistant coach of the Buffalo Sabres during the 2006-07 season. Patrick would spend the next seven years of his career with the Sabres before moving on to the Dallas Stars where he served as an assistant coach between 2013-2017.

Patrick will make his Royals debut behind the bench Friday against the Seattle Thunderbirds at SOFMC. Royals assistant coach Morgan Klimchuk will lead the coaching duties for tomorrow’s game when the Royals take on the Red Deer Rebels.