The New Jersey Storm announced today that Jim Brady has resigned as head coach and will remain with the club as General Manager. Assistant Coach Peter Vipond has been named Head Coach. New Jersey (2-7) is currently riding a six-game losing streak. The Storm is playing its second season in the 17-year old National Lacrosse League.
Brady, a Canadian Lacrosse Hall-of-Famer, finished out last season as New Jersey?s Interim Head Coach and helped the Storm win four of its last six games. He was then named General Manager and Head Coach in August 2002. The St. Catharines, Ontario native amassed a (6-15) record as Storm Coach over the last two years. Earlier in his career, Brady coached at the Junior A level in Canada and amassed over 600 wins, including 100 playoff victories, and six National Championships as a General Manager and Coach.
"This was the plan from the beginning," said Storm Governor Chip Santye, "Jim didn?t really want to coach the team this year, but at the time we felt he was the best candidate. Peter Vipond is a tremendous coach with a world of experience. Now that he?s been around the League once, Jim feels comfortable turning over the reins and concentrating on the personnel end of the franchise. Jim Brady?s experience is a great asset to the Storm organization and we look forward to continuing to work with him on building a championship club."
"This is a positive thing," Brady said, "What I do best is put together teams and now I?ll get to concentrate on that. Peter Vipond has been nothing but a Head Coach all his life. The players like and respect Peter and believe in him. Hopefully this move, plus the return of our top goaltender Matt Roik, will be the keys to turn around our luck and lead us to the playoffs."
Vipond, also a Canadian Lacrosse Hall-of Famer, brings 34 years of lacrosse experience to the bench. He won four Minto Cups as a member of the Oshawa Green Gaels in the mid-1960?s and was a finalist three times with the Brooklin Redmen in the 1970?s. In the 1980?s and 90?s, Vipond became one of the most successful coaches in Canadian lacrosse history, winning one Minto Cup title with the Whitby Warriors and five Mann Cup championships with the Brooklin Redmen.
"I?m excited about the opportunity," Vipond said, "Jim and I discussed at the outset that at some point I would move up. It has been tough for us playing without our number one goaltender, so Matty Roik?s return will definitely help. I feel pretty good about our team. If we work hard and avoid silly mistakes, things should work out well." Roik missed six weeks after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery, he is expected to play today versus the Philadelphia Wings at the First Union Center.
The Storm returns home to face the Albany Attack on Friday, February 28th at Continental Airlines Arena at 7:30 p.m. For Storm tickets call Ticketmaster at 201-507-8900, go to any Ticketmaster location or the Arena box office, or log on to Ticketmaster.com. For more information on the Storm call 1-866-NJ STORM or log on to njstorm.com.