Roy Sommer, AHL's Winningest Coach, Takes Over Gulls

After spending 26 seasons in the Sharks organization the 65-year-old is the third head coach in four years for San Diego.

San Diego is a desirable place to be, and that's no different if you're a head coach in the AHL.

"It's probably one of the most sought after positions in minor league hockey to get, and when they told me I got the job I was fired up."

Those were the words of Roy Sommer on Tuesday, when he was introduced as the club's fourth head coach. Sommer is familiar with the team and locale, having spent the last seven seasons among their Pacific Division rivals in San Jose.

Sommer spent the last 26 seasons in the Sharks organization. During that time he became the winningest coach in AHL history with 808 victories in a league record 1,736 games. During his time in San Jose he guided the Barracuda to five playoff appearances in seven seasons.

The 65-year-old takes over an organization that has lacked stability since Dallas Eakins' departure in 2019. Sommer is the third head coach in four years, following two years of Kevin Dineen and a single season under Joel Bouchard.

"I'm not a spring chicken, I don't have a lot of years left in me coaching," Sommer said. "But I sure would like to win a Calder Cup here."

Sommer also expressed admiration for the Gulls' fanbase, calling it one of the best in the AHL.

The team's new leadership at the top includes first year general manager Rob DiMaio. The 54-year-old spent 19 seasons in the NHL and was hired in May.

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