The Seattle Thunderbirds have named Steven Goertzen director of player development.
“We are excited to be bringing Steven on board,” said Russ Farwell, vice president of hockey operations. “He worked with our prospects at this year’s spring camp and has done a great job in our on-ice sessions at previous spring camps. He has been involved in both power skating and skills development the last 10 years, and he is a great addition to our staff.”
“Steven has been working for our new ownership group in the Edmonton area and that made this possible as a shared position to help us develop our prospects.”
The T-Birds had their annual spring camp last weekend in Edmonton, Alberta at the Downtown Community Arena.
“As a proud alumnus, I am excited to be going back to an organization that gave me an opportunity to live out my dream as a professional hockey player,” Goertzen said. “Joining the T-Birds is a huge honor, and I look forward to working alongside the knowledgeable Thunderbirds coaching staff in continuing to assist the players in their development.”
Goertzen is a former T-Bird who played professionally in the NHL, AHL, EIHL and Czech League. He played 68 career games in the NHL with the Columbus Blue Jackets, Carolina Hurricanes and Phoenix Coyotes and had two goals and two assists with 83 penalty minutes. He played eight seasons in the AHL with the Syracuse Crunch, San Antonio Rampage, Albany River Rats, and Springfield Falcons. Goertzen played one season in the Czech League with Mlada Boleslav BK and three seasons in the EIHL with the Sheffield Steelers and Coventry Blaze.
Goertzen, from Stony Plain, Alberta, played three seasons with the T-Birds from 2001-02 to 2003-04. He appeared in 206 games and had 33 goals and 46 assists for 79 points with 255 penalty minutes.
Goertzen was selected by the Blue Jackets in the seventh round, 225th overall, in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft.