The Lehigh Valley Phantoms officially have a new head coach, and it’s a familiar face:
Ian Lapperiere was officially named as the 11th head coach in Phantoms history on Sunday evening (after countless rumors), after having been in the Flyers’ NHL coaching circuit since 2012. Lapperiere, now 47, first served as the Flyers’ Director of Player Development, and then was quickly named as an assistant coach a year later.
Over the years, Lapperiere’s coaching has been highly questioned due to the Flyers’ lack of a penalty kill when Lapperiere had been in charge of that area of play. However, as a head coach, Lapperiere will have far more areas of the game to cover, and by all accounts he has a good relationship with Flyers/Phantoms players. Lapperiere’s most recent role with the NHL club was pre-scouting and observing games from the press box, perhaps with hindsight a move to prepare Lapperiere for developing the tactical knowledge and observatory skills he’ll need for his upcoming role.