Calder Cup Champions - 2013 & 2017
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Feb 18, 2005
Written By: EdenCreative
Brings Experience of Seven Years as a Coach, 800 Games as a Player to Griffins

The Grand Rapids Griffins on Friday named Chris Cichocki (chih-HAH-kee) as the new assistant coach for the American Hockey League team. His first game alongside head coach Greg Ireland will be on Saturday, when the Griffins visit Cincinnati for a 7:35 p.m. start against the Mighty Ducks.

Cichocki, 41, has spent the last seven seasons as a coach in the ECHL and IHL ranks. In four years as a head coach in the ECHL with Cincinnati (2003-04) and Arkansas (2000-03), he compiled a record of 127-122-39 and twice led his teams to the playoffs.

His coaching career began upon his retirement as a player six games in the 1997-98 IHL season. He remained with Cincinnati as an assistant coach, helping guide the club to three consecutive 40-win seasons and a berth in the 2000 Eastern Conference finals, where the Cyclones fell to the Griffins in five games.

I had a chance to work with Chris for two years when I was in the ECHL with Dayton and he was an assistant with Cincinnati, our affiliate, said Ireland. I saw how hard-working, dedicated and passionate he was, as well as some of the fresh ideas he brought to the table.

I wanted to bring in someone who had not only been at this level as an assistant but had also been a head coach before. On top of that, having known him and having built a friendship, I knew Chris was someone I could hit the ground running with, since theres not a lot of time left in the season, said Ireland.

A Detroit native who played collegiately at Michigan Tech, Cichocki enjoyed a 13-year professional career as a forward, logging 574 points (280-294574) in 800 regular season contests. He appeared in 68 NHL games with Detroit and New Jersey, including 59 during a 1985-86 rookie season with the Red Wings in which he racked up 21 points (10-1121).

Cichocki registered at least 23 goals and 51 points in each of his seven full AHL seasons with Adirondack, Utica and Binghamton, averaging nearly a point per game by totaling 431 points (215-216431) in 490 contests. He completed his playing career during four-plus IHL seasons in Cincinnati (1993-98), helping the team earn four 40-win campaigns, a division title (1996) and two trips to the league semifinals.

Ireland speaks about Cichocki Listen