The Carolina Hurricanes and Charlotte Checkers announced on Wednesday that Ryan Warsofsky has been hired to be the new head coach of the defending Calder Cup champion Checkers.
This announcement comes two weeks after former Checkers head coach and Hurricanes assistant general manager Mike Vellucci parted ways with the organization to join the Pittsburgh Penguins organization.
Hurricanes president and general manager Don Waddell issued the following statement about the hire:
“We’ve been very impressed with Ryan since he joined our organization. He was a big part of the Checkers’ championship season last year and we’re excited to have him take over as Head Coach.”
At the age of 31, Warsofsky becomes the youngest AHL head coach since 2000. He previously served as the head coach of the ECHL’s South Carolina Stingrays from 2016 to 2018 before accepting a position on Vellucci’s coaching staff before the 2018-19 season. He was in charge of Charlotte’s penalty kill, which ranked second in the AHL during the regular season.
Warsofsky played college hockey at Sacred Heart University and Curry University before trying his hand at professional hockey across three low-level leagues in 2011-12. He then began his career as a coach in 2012-13 and has been steadily rising through the ranks ever since.
His younger brother, David, was a fourth-round pick of the St. Louis Blues in 2008. He has skated in 55 NHL games and is currently in the Pittsburgh Penguins organization.
Below is the official news release from the Hurricanes on the promotion of Ryan Warsofsky:
RALEIGH, NC - Don Waddell, President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has hired Ryan Warsofsky as Head Coach of the Charlotte Checkers.
”We’ve been very impressed with Ryan since he joined our organization,” said Waddell. ”He was a big part of the Checkers’ championship season last year and we’re excited to have him take over as Head Coach.”
Warsofsky, 31, was named Checkers Assistant Coach on July 23, 2018 and helped Charlotte capture their first-ever Calder Cup Championship in 2018-19. In his first season, the Checkers led the league in penalty kill percentage (86.6%) after finishing 24th in the category in 2017-18 (81.2%). Warsofsky spent two seasons as Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations for the ECHL’s South Carolina Stingrays from 2016-18, posting an 88-44-10-2 record. He led the Stingrays to the Kelly Cup Finals during the 2016-17 season, becoming the second-youngest coach in ECHL history to reach the league finals. Prior to becoming South Carolina Head Coach, Warsofsky spent three seasons as Assistant Coach with the Stingrays from 2013-16.
The North Marshfield, Mass., native played collegiately as a defenseman at Sacred Heart and Curry College, where he posted 47 points (13g, 34a) in 71 games (2008-11). After college, Warsofsky spent the 2011-12 season playing professionally for Turnhout (Netherlands), Rio Grande Valley (CHL) and Cape Cod (FHL). He then served as Assistant Coach at Curry College in 2012-13 before joining the Stingrays in 2013. His brother, David, is a defenseman in the Pittsburgh Penguins organization who has appeared in 55 career NHL games.