A timeframe hasn’t been set but the Soo Greyhounds also don’t plan to waste time when it comes to finding a replacement for Drew Bannister.
The search officially began Tuesday morning when Bannister was hired by the St. Louis Blues to coach their American Hockey League affiliate, the San Antonio Rampage.
Interest in the vacant Greyhounds position increased Tuesday when Bannister’s hiring was made official by the Rampage.
“It’s going to be an interesting process and not something we’re going to rush,” said Greyhounds General Manager Kyle Raftis. “It’s about finding the right fit for us.”
Bannister’s departure wasn’t a surprise as the now-former Greyhounds coach had been receiving interest following the completion of the season.
“You can see a little bit of the writing on the wall in terms of what pro teams are coming around and speaking to your coaching staff and getting a feel,” Raftis said. “They talked to me as well, so you get a feel for what’s coming.
“Now that it’s official and out in the open, we can review our process internally and get a feel for what we’re looking for in our next head coach,” Raftis added.
Raftis would say that sooner rather than later would be the ideal scenario in terms of naming Bannister’s replacement, but the team won’t rush the hiring.
“The more great candidates you get, the more you can push on people and that’s how we came up with Drew,” Raftis said. “Drew was at the top of the list immediately, but you don’t want to have a predisposition of what a person is like. Sometimes you have an opinion of what a coach is like but they’re operating in a different organization that operates a different way. Until you get into a room with someone and really get to know them and their personality, it’s tough.”
Raftis would also say that filling the job internally would be an option the team could consider.