OHL Appoints Joe Stefan and Pat Peake to Coach Flint Firebirds

Thursday February 18, 2016

Toronto, ON – The Ontario Hockey League today announced the appointment of Joe Stefan who will serve as interim head coach of the Flint Firebirds alongside interim assistant coach Pat Peake beginning with tonight’s game against the Erie Otters at Flint’s Dort Federal Event Center.

“The Ontario Hockey League appreciates the support from Joe Stefan, and distinguished OHL alumnus Pat Peake during this challenging period,” said OHL Commissioner David Branch. “The league has also appointed Joe Birch, OHL Senior Director of Hockey Development, to support the players behind the bench tonight.”

Stefan, who presently serves as the Firebirds’ Assistant General Manager, began his OHL coaching career with the Plymouth Whalers as an assistant in 2007 after joining the club’s staff as a scout in 2005.  He worked seven seasons behind the Whalers’ bench also holding the title of associate coach.  As a player, Stefan competed for the OHL’s Brantford Alexanders and the Hamilton Steelhawks from 1983-86 before a minor pro career that included four seasons in the IHL and more than 10 seasons in the British National League.

Peake, a native of Rochester, Michigan, had an illustrious three-year OHL career that began with the Detroit Compuware Ambassadors in 1990-91.  He holds the Whalers’ all-time record with 319 points including 138 goals and 181 assists in 162 games earning the Red Tilson Trophy as the OHL’s Most Outstanding Player of the Year for the 1992-93 season with the Detroit Jr. Red Wings.  He was selected 14th overall by the Washington Capitals in the 1991 NHL Entry Draft and played parts of four seasons before retiring due to injury in 1998.  He currently coaches in the Detroit Little Caesars youth program. 

Birch returned to the OHL as the league’s Senior Director of Hockey Development and Special Events in the 2012-13 season.  He previously spent six years as the OHL’s Director of Recruitment and Education Services before joining Newport Sports Management Inc in October, 2011.

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