Stars News

Texas Stars Introduce New Head Coach Willie Desjardins
Texas Stars Introduce New Head Coach Willie Desjardins
Third Head Coach in Team History Speaks to Media

Cedar Park, TX – With a talent for nurturing young players and first-hand knowledge of the Dallas system, Willie Desjardins is ready to take the helm as the third head coach of the Texas Stars.

Texas Stars General Manager Scott White introduced Desjardins at a press conference held at Cedar Park Center this morning. “It’s an exciting time for us. We’ve known Willie for the past few years and he’s been part of the Dallas system as Gulutzan’s assistant. He’s very familiar with our structure, our players and our prospects,” White said. “We know he is very capable. We welcome him and his family to the area and are looking forward to many great things.”

Desjardins voiced his excitement to take his spot behind the bench. “I look at the team and the talent level and there is so much potential. Hopefully this will be a great relationship and I’m looking forward to it.”

White found the familiarity with Desjardins to be a determining factor in the choice for a new coach. “It was part of the structure and what we want to play with. Willie has tons of experience on the junior level and managing young players, which is great.”

The 55-year-old spent the previous two seasons with the Dallas Stars as associate coach, helping the team accrue an 84-64-16 record. Stars’ head coach Glen Gulutzan was on hand to discuss Desjardins’ experience. “I learned as much from him as he did from me. It’s great to have a guy of his caliber here with our team. Willie’s got the ability to adapt and it strengthens the organization to have the same ideas,” Gulutzan said.

Desjardins was optimistic about the future with such a young team. “These guys always show up and want to do better, and that’s really important. The exciting part of working with young guys is you never know what they’re going to do next.”

When asked about Calder Cup pressure, the Saskatchewan native replied, “We want to get there. That’s what we expect from our players. My coaching philosophy is to find a way to win. We want to be a fast skating team, move the puck and attack.”

Before joining Dallas, he was head coach of the Medicine Hat Tigers of the Western Hockey League from 2002-2010, propelling the club to two WHL Championships in 2004 and 2007. Desjardins was awarded the Dunc McCallum Memorial Trophy for WHL Coach of the Year in the 2005-2006 season.

“It’s a chance to work with young players who want to get better. I am so thankful for the opportunity.”

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Posted on 06/14/12

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