Simon takes reigns behind Bandits' bench
Regg Simon has been named the new Head Coach and General Manager of the St. Louis Bandits’ NAHL franchise, announced V.P. of Hockey Operations and Bandits partner Kelly Chase.
“Regg Simon has the hockey experience and management skills necessary to continue the Bandits’ winning performance and advancement of players to NCAA Division I programs,” said Chase.
Simon begins his employment immediately and will be selecting the Bandits’ picks in the NAHL Entry Draft on Wednesday, May 21, said Chase.
Simon, a native of Elk River, Minn., brings a wealth of experience and success at the junior hockey level. He started his coaching career during the 2002-03 season with the Tri-City Storm of the USHL as an assistant coach and later as an interim head coach. The next season, he joined the Des Moines Buccaneers of the USHL as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator. In 2005, he was promoted to the head coach and general manager position for the Buccaneers.
In his first full season as the head coach in Des Moines, Simon led the Buccaneers to the USHL Cchampionship. A season later, the Buccaneers lost in the semifinals in their bid to repeat as champions.
Over 100 wins, a 15-4 playoff record, 12 NHL draft picks and over 60 players sent to Division I college hockey later, coach Simon is coming to St. Louis.
“I’m excited and honored to be a part of what I believe to be the premier organization in the North American Hockey League,” said Simon. “The opportunity to come to a team whose success of winning and putting players into college hockey wasn’t a difficult decision.”
The Bandits have won back-to-back Robertson Cup national championships in 2007 and 2008. The most recent was hosted in St. Louis in early May, seeing the hometown team capture its second title on home ice in front of a crowd of over 2,000 people.
“At the end of the day, I wanted to be in a place where the players are taken care of and the ownership group has the same principals that I do,” added Simon. “The professionalism and honesty that I’ve been treated with here has impressed me.”
At the NAHL draft, the Bandits will look to replace a key group of players who were a large part of the their championship team.
“I believe there is a core group of returning players here that we can build around,” said Simon. “We’re going to go after players who we feel can play our style of hockey and come with a winning attitude that is expected in this organization.”