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Islanders Name Scott Pellerin AHL Bridgeport Head Coach

He who leads the Sound Tigers leads the future of the Islanders.
He who leads the Sound Tigers leads the future of the Islanders.

The New York Islanders have found a new head coach for their AHL affiliate Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Multiple reports have them giving the nod to former NHL player and recent Manchester Monarchs assistant coach Scott Pellerin. [Update: official announcement is now live.]

The New Hampshire Union Leader confirmed the move with Pellerin last night, and Connecticut Post Sound Tigers beatwriter Michael Fornabaio adds some context here and here. In addition to having some shared U. of Maine history with Islanders GM Garth Snow and the Capuanos, Pellerin has been groomed in the coaching ranks as part of a successful Manchester operation since 2006.

Though a prolific Hobey Baker Award winner in college and a point per game player in the AHL, during his NHL playing career Pellerin was a plugger -- a grinding defensive forward who stuck to the task assigned him by quite well regarded coaches like Jacques Lemaire (with both the Devils and the Wild) and Joel Quenneville (with the Blues). His NHL career high was 20 goals in 1998-99 with the Blues, almost a fluke year, so he wouldn't have lasted as long as he did above the AHL without disciplined attention to all parts of his game.

By and large, he was the kind of reliable defensive and penalty killing forward coaches love to trust, so I suspect he'll bring that same ethic of attention to detail to this role. As he told the Union Leader (among other quotes worth checking out):

"My coaching style is in line with what Garth was looking for to fill the post. My role is going to develop players on the minor league level, win as many games as we can and, to help our players reach their goals."

According to the above reports, the official announcement is expected soon. [Update: Here.]