New face — but familiar name — joins Giants coaching staff

Dean Chynoweth named Vancouver’s associate head coach

The Vancouver Giants have added some experience — and a well-known name in Western Hockey League circles — behind the bench, naming Dean Chynoweth as the club’s new associate coach.

The 48-year-old played 241 NHL games with the New York Islanders and Boston Bruins after the Islanders selected the Calgary native 13th overall in 1987 following a three-year WHL career with the Medicine Hat Tigers.

Chynoweth’s father Ed was the president of the WHL for more than 20 years and founded the Kootenay Ice franchise. The league’s championship trophy bears his name.

“The WHL and junior hockey have influenced me tremendously from my days as a player and a coach as well as my father’s contributions to the league as president and later as an owner,” Chynoweth said.

“This history has had a significant impact on me and my family, and I am looking forward to returning to the WHL with the Giants organization.”

After Chynoweth’s retirement, he went into coaching, serving as head coach of Seattle (2000-2004) and coach and general manager of Swift Current (2004-2009). He then spent three seasons as an assistant coach in the NHL with the Islanders and four years as head coach in the American Hockey League with Cleveland and San Antonio.

Giants general manager Glen Hanlon is pleased to add Chynoweth behind the bench, where he will assist Jason McKee.

“One of his many responsibilities will be to work with our young defencemen, and with the wealth of hockey knowledge and the experience Dean brings from his playing and coaching careers, we know they will benefit from having the chance to learn from him,” Hanlon said.