The Cardiff Devils have agreed to a new five-year deal with head coach Andrew Lord.
Managing Director Todd Kelman explained the agreement with his long-term coach, saying: “Andrew has been Cardiff’s head coach since our ownership group took over in the summer of 2014.
“We have seen a fit ew-year period of success on and off the ice.
“If I could have Andrew Lord working with me for the next 20 years, I would happily do that. He brings passion, detail and motivation every day to the rink and that hasn’t changed since the day he took the job.
“We wanted to lock him in long term, but also be fair and give an ambitious young coach the window to advance if the right opportunity comes up.
“This league has improved so much over the last few years. You see the quality of players coming in, the performance of Team GB, the participation in the Champions League, teams going to four-line hockey.
“The EIHL is nothing like it was six or seven years ago.
“There is a growing respect for the EIHL. The quality of players and coaches is at an all-time high.”
Lord, the most successful head coach in Devils history, will return for a sixth season in charge after agreeing to his new deal.
The deal is a five-year agreement that gives Lord the option to move onto another league if the right opportunity comes up with a window after the season to pursue opportunities that may present themselves.
“There is a specific time frame every off-season that means he cannot leave past a certain deadline date.
“The date is set late enough to give him time to look into coaching opportunities in other leagues, but early enough to ensure the Devils will have plenty of time to find a coach if he did decide to leave.
“This option will take affect after this 2019-20 season.”
The contract includes an ownership stake in the team that is triggered if he stays for another two years in Cardiff.
During his five years in charge, Lord has led the Devils to two League titles, two Challenge Cup victories, three Conference titles and back to back play-off Championships.