The Henderson Silver Knights are getting some Stanley Cup experience. Vegas Golden Knights assistant Ryan Craig, fresh off a championship, will transfer to a new role in the organization, moving to head coach of the Silver Knights for the 2022-23 season.
Vegas general manager Kelly McCrimmon released the following:
I have tremendous respect for Ryan Craig as both a person and a professional and believe we have an ideal coach to lead our team in Henderson. He is a proven leader who has learned from some of the game’s best coaches. He understands the importance of the AHL level both in terms of developing our NHL prospects and creating a winning environment.
While serving as an assistant in the NHL is a great start to any coaching resume, for Craig to take the next step, he likely needs some head coaching experience. He’ll get that opportunity after six years on the Vegas bench.
An eighth-round pick of the Tampa Bay Lightning back in 2002 (after a successful junior career under McCrimmon with the Brandon Wheat Kings), Craig carved out a long professional career, bouncing between the AHL and NHL. In 198 games at the highest level, he scored 32 goals and 63 points.
Now, he’ll be in charge of developing the next wave of Golden Knights prospects while getting that much-needed headed coaching experience. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Craig’s name floated around as a potential NHL head coach in a few years, should the AHL experience go well.