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Tailing the Komets

Puhalski is leaving

The Fort Wayne Komets are looking for the 25th coach in their
55-year history, The News-Sentinel has learned. Greg Puhalski, the winning-est
coach in United Hockey League history, is taking over the new Chicago Hounds
team in Hoffman Estates, Ill.

Puhalski, 41, recently completed his sixth season behind the
Komets' bench. During his tenure, the Komets won the 2003 Colonial Cup, had
back-to-back 50-win seasons in 2003-04 and 2004-05 and won four division titles. Last season he led the
Komets to a sixth-place finish in the overall UHL standings. The team was
knocked out of the playoffs in the first round by Rockford in five games.

``This is a personal and family-related issue for Greg,'' Komets General Manager David Franke said. ``I know this was a very difficult decision for Greg to make, but as we sat and discussed it, it will bring him a breath of fresh air, and we'll take on a different look, too.''

Puhalski worked with Chicago Tuesday during the UHL dispersal draft in Detroit. David Franke and Komets President Michael Franke made the selections for the Komets.

``We have no negative thoughts at all on this,'' David Franke said. ``Greg has done a tremendous job for us.''

Puhalski won 271 games as Komets coach, second all-time in
franchise history to Ken Ullyot's 304. He has 359 wins in his UHL career,
including two years in Port Huron before he came to Fort Wayne.

Because he had a year remaining on his contract, the Komets are
expecting compensation from the Hounds. The former Richmond RiverDogs, the
Hounds have several players the Komets could have interest in, including
defenseman Dan Vandermeer or goaltender Mike D'Alessandro. David Franke said any compensation won't be announced until the UHL meetings.

Puhalski's wife Ali is an actress who worked in  Chicago a few years ago but moved home to Fort Wayne.
A move by Puhalski to Hoffman Estates would allow her to
resume her own career.


``I want to
thank the Frankes, especially David and Michael, for their support,'' Puhalski said. ``They've been
tremendous and my wife and I would like to thank the entire Fort Wayne community for
making us feel at home here.''

Puhalski said discussions began two weeks after the season and picked up momentum last week.  He starts June  16 as coach and director of operations.


Posted in: Komets


Thu, 06/08/2006 - 7:31am

justins column this morning is such a hoot. us poor unintelligent season ticket holders with the minority opinion sure are partying now that chief is gone. did he take a poll from all the fans to come up with this? just have to laugh. see my post on h is site. go komets!!

Thu, 06/08/2006 - 7:58am

Hopefully, this will be my last comment on Puhalski. He's not bashing any of the fans even when Justin egged him on about those that critized Chief behind his back. All Chief said was that the fans have been great to him and his family and that no one ever said a discouraging word to him. To me that shows a lot of class. He may think differently, but he's sure not going to say it. And if he thinks and feels differently, Chief didn't need to say anything about the fans at all.

Tony E
Thu, 06/08/2006 - 8:08am

Well, I am GLAD Martinson isn't coming here! The guy may win but he acts like an idiot behind the bench. I have no patience for coaches who rant and rave at officials as he does. His players take his lead. There is a reason that Rockford players whine and complain after every call. It is because they take the lead from the coach.

Well Blake....you and Justin must be clueless...oh wait...you two must be getting something under the table to spin things.... maybe change the name of this column to Spinning the Komets?
Guys (and Ladies), Blake and Justin can only write what they are told. It isn't up to them to take a quote, print it and then argue with it. They write columns but they are not GOSSIP columns. I am sure in private they may have questions just like any of us but the paper is not the place for that. You are here on these blogs because you enjoy reading and respect what they write. If you want them to post wild rumors to ruin their credibility that isn't going to happen and there are plenty of "experts" on ITB and other trash boards to do that.

ARRRGGGGHHHH before I go Archie Bunker I am going to go spend some money on Ebay LOL.
I don't mean to rant guys but you don't normally walk into someones house and pretty much accuse them of lies and intentional deceit.

Thu, 06/08/2006 - 8:47am

Well, from reading the board, maybe the compensation is a mop.

Thu, 06/08/2006 - 9:03am

Tony E --

Quit sucking up to the girls.

Or go to Oprah.

Tony E
Thu, 06/08/2006 - 9:22am


Tony E
Thu, 06/08/2006 - 9:26am

aw heck. Skate.........
bleeping bleeper bleep bleeep no good bleep.... (chairs start to throw)....motherbleep.....bleep.....not my kid...bleep......I didn't touch her....bleeep...I wouldn't do that with my sister...bleep.....

Oh wait.. You said Oprah. I walked into the Jerry Springer show by mistake.

Komet Warrior
Thu, 06/08/2006 - 11:31am

I can not believe some of you people actually call yourself fans. Coach Puhalski has done great things in his 6 years in the Fort and yet people are ungrateful and disgusting. He has always turned out winning teams and his squads regularly challenged for the Cup. To many fair weather fans here for sure. Must have been spoiled as children or something. The guy IS THE WINNINGEST COACH IN UHL HISTORY! What part of this do you not understand?

This has truly been a sad week in seeing Coach leave. I can only hope that his decision was not enhanced by the thoughts of some of you people

Thu, 06/08/2006 - 11:53am

Komet Warrior is Greg Puhalski.

Skate, when did I pass the tourch of being the biggest jerk on this blog onto you?


Thu, 06/08/2006 - 12:05pm

KW-See my post in Justin's blog.

JM-You're not Giving Chief an ounce of credit are you?

Thu, 06/08/2006 - 12:36pm

I'll give him 4 ounces of credit, Greg. Thats per pound or roughly 25% of the credit for the Komets success.

Thu, 06/08/2006 - 3:31pm

Komet Warrior....you are right about one thing....a lot of the fans are spoiled, since the Komets enjoyed a huge amount of success the first few years the Franke's have owned the team, people got used to it and now expect it. We have enjoyed more successful seasons in the past 15 plus years than some teams will ever see in 50+ years! (Ask Tony about the Maple Leafs!) While I like to win also, I'm not going to think it's the end of the world if we lose. My expectation is that I want to see a quality effort and hard working players. Hard work and determination can make even a not so talented team look like world beaters.

Hit Somebody!!!
Thu, 06/08/2006 - 5:42pm

Entertainment boys....entertainment. That is the bottomline....oh winning is nice too. But the team we wasted our time on last year was only entertaining what 5 or 6 home games last year and 2 of those were the last 2 regular season games. And I think the players we have seen come in and out of the revolvong door the past 6 years have been entertaining at times here, but are always much more entertaining when they leave or before they got here...why is that? HHHHHMMMMMMMM......Give you one guess.

Thu, 06/08/2006 - 5:52pm

Because some of us dont like a coaches style and would prefer a different style means that we were spoiled as children???? What kind nonsense is that??? You liked the coach I didnt....period. Remember Puhalski came to one of the best franchises in minor league hockey with a strong winning tradition and won alot of games. Its not like he came to a franchise thats been horrible for 50+ years with bad managment and made them a contender every year. Hopefully the K's will find another good coach that everyone likes who can bring back that edge that ALOT of fans want and continue the K's winning ways...

Sat, 06/10/2006 - 8:13am

this franchise had a lot of success long before the frankes bought them. it is like the yankees in mbl. (sorry skate) im spoiled because im in a city that has had owners who put their souls and their money into the team and we have been the elite minor league team along with hershey for many many years. yes there has been down years but we fans expect to be at the top every year and if we dont make it we can be satisfied if everyone gave the effort. so since we have been so great does that mean we are suppose to sit back and take a few bad times and be satisfied with a boring style of play and non success in the playoffs? i think not! if somethings wrong, lets identify it and fix it. lets not just sit back and become stagnant or stop coming to games. if we didnt stay on top of thing and if we dont expect ist place every year, then hockey city will just be another town like saginaw or indy with no teams or a city like flint or port huron who struggle badly. spoiled? youre damn right we are, and glad for it!!!!!!!