Sharks add assistant coach who was hired and suddenly let go by Islanders in July

Sharks add assistant coach who was hired and suddenly let go by Islanders in July

By Curtis Pashelka

The San Jose Sharks have hired Brian Wiseman as an assistant coach, just weeks after he was hired by the New York Islanders and parted ways with that team within a month.

The Islanders announced July 5 that Wiseman, 51, had been hired to be as an assistant on head coach Lane Lambert’s staff. On July 28, though, the Islanders announced John MacLean would be joining the team as an assistant coach, and that Wiseman, for unexplained reasons, would not.

Wiseman on Friday said he had not officially signed a contract with the Islanders and that after further discussions, he and the team “decided to go in separate ways.” An email to an Islanders representative seeking clarification on why Wiseman was replaced with MacLean, a former Sharks assistant, was not immediately returned.

There was speculation, however, that sexual assault charges Wiseman faced over 26 years ago in his hometown of Chatham, Ontario – of which he was acquitted – played a role in his departure from New York. Articles of Wiseman’s previous legal troubles surfaced after the July 5 announcement.

In February 1996, Wiseman, then a forward with the IHL’s Chicago Wolves, and another man were tried on two counts of sexual assault after an alleged 1991 incident with a then-15-year-old girl. Per the Chicago Tribune, the purported incident was first reported to police in April 1993, and charges were filed later that year.

Wiseman, who was 19 and a sophomore at the University of Michigan at the time of the alleged assault, was acquitted on all charges, as was the other individual, a Chatham fitness instructor.

Wiseman and Sharks head coach David Quinn were not directly asked about the alleged 1991 incident during their media availability Friday morning. (This news organization became aware of the matter after that call.) Asked later if the Sharks knew about the charges Wiseman faced over a quarter-century ago, a team representative said it would email a response, although it had not been received at the time this story was first published.

Wiseman played at Michigan from 1990 to 1994 and was a 12th-round draft choice of the New York Rangers in 1991. Wiseman played pro hockey from 1994 to 2000, including three games with the Toronto Maple Leafs in December 1996.

He was the Dallas Stars’ video coach in 2002-03 and began his coaching career as an assistant at Princeton University for the 2003-04 season. Wiseman became an assistant with the Houston Aeros of the AHL in 2010-11, helping the team reach the Calder Cup Final.

Wiseman was an assistant coach at Michigan from 2011 to 2019 before he received his first NHL coaching job, as he joined the Edmonton Oilers under former coach Dave Tippett. Tippett was replaced by Jay Woodcroft in February and Wiseman remained on the Oilers staff before officially parting ways in June.

With Edmonton, Wiseman focused on the team’s offensive strategies, working with the team’s forwards with an additional focus on face-offs. With the Sharks, Wiseman, alongside fellow assistant Scott Gordon, will also work with the team’s forwards, assist with the power play and help with pre-scouting opponents, Quinn said.

After his departure from the Islanders, Wiseman said he had interest from the other NHL teams, but relished an opportunity to work alongside Quinn, who he has known for roughly two decades. A week ago, the Sharks announced Gordon and Ryan Warsofsky as their new assistants, with Thomas Speer becoming the goalie coach and Nick Gialdini the video coach.

“One of the biggest things I took from Edmonton was a very well connected staff, and that’s paramount,” Wiseman said. “I know David’s approach is of the importance of the connected staff, the communication and relationships that we have to have with these players, because we’re all in this together.”

Source: Paradise Post

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