Green Bay Gamblers head coach Mike Leone takes job with Buffalo Sabres AHL affiliate

Green Bay Gamblers head coach Mike Leone takes job with Buffalo Sabres AHL affiliate

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – Green Bay Gamblers head coach Mike Leone is taking a head coaching job with the Buffalo Sabres AHL affiliate, the Rochester Americans.

Buffalo Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams and Rochester Americans general manager Jason Karmanos announced on Thursday that Leone will leave the United States Hockey League (USHL) for the American Hockey League (AHL).

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“I am pleased to welcome Mike Leone as the head coach of the Rochester Americans,” said Adams. “The Amerks head coach plays a crucial role in the overall success and growth of our organization, and after a rigorous interview process, it became clear that Mike was the right individual for the job. His development mindset and professional versatility over the course of his career were just some of the many qualities that stood out as we searched for an individual to continue focusing on combining both winning and development in Rochester.”

Leone amassed a 66-41-10-7 record in his two seasons with Green Bay, leading the Gamblers to back-to-back 30-plus win seasons as well as consecutive playoff appearances for the first time in over a decade.

Leone piloted Green Bay’s resurgence through the 2022-23 campaign, helping the team finish with the most wins (32) and points (71) since 2016-17. The following year saw the Gamblers capture two more wins and earn a third-place finish in the USHL’’’s Eastern Conference standings, culminating with a return trip to the postseason for the second straight year.

“I’m extremely grateful and humbled to be a part of the Buffalo Sabres organization as the next head coach of the Rochester Americans,” said Leone. “I want to thank Kevyn Adams and Jason Karmanos for giving me the opportunity to lead the organization and believing in me. I look forward to meeting everyone in the organization and helping our prospects continue to grow and develop on and off the ice.”

A native of Dearborn Heights, Michigan, Leone has extensive coaching experience at the international level, most recently serving as an assistant coach for the U.S. Junior Select team in 2023.

He served in the same capacity with the 2022 U.S. Under-18 Men’s Select Team at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup and at the 2021 Under-17 Five Nations Tournament, where he helped guide the U.S. to the championship.

Additionally, Leone was an assistant coach at the 2021 IIHF Under-18 Men’s World Championship and was behind the bench for Team USA’s 2019 Under-17 Four Nations championship-winning team and for the Under-17 World Hockey Challenge, where the U.S. placed second.

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Officials from the Green Bay Gamblers said they’re excited for Leone and wish him and his family the best of luck. Associate head coach Pat McCadden and assistant general manager/director of scouting Kirk Luedeke will lead the Gamblers’ main try-out camp, which will be held from Saturday, June 8, to Thursday, June 13, at the Resch Center.

After camp is completed, the Gamblers will begin the process of filling the vacant head coach/general manager position.

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