Red Wings call up Griffins coaches
Two more Grand Rapids Griffins have earned promotions to the National Hockey League.
Following their first season as Jeff Blashill’s assistant coaches in Grand Rapids, Pat Ferschweiler and Dave Noel-Bernier will join Blashill with the Detroit Red Wings. Blashill was hired as the Red Wings head coach on June 9.
Ferschweiler, 45, will be one of Blashill’s assistant coaches. Noel-Bernier, 39, will join the staff as video coach.
The pair are the first two Grand Rapids assistant coaches to earn a direct promotion to the NHL and the fourth and fifth former Grand Rapids coaches who have served as NHL assistants.
Curtis Hunt, Kelly Miller and recently hired Griffins head coach Todd Nelson all became NHL assistants after their departures from Grand Rapids.
Prior to joining the Griffins, Ferschweiler spent four seasons as an assistant coach and associate head coach at Western Michigan University, including a year under Blashill when the team earned its first bid to the CCHA Finals since 1996.
Before his time with WMU, Ferschweiler was the general manager and head coach of the Russell Stover Under-18 team in the Midwest Elite Hockey League.
He played in 527 professional hockey games during an eight-year career, including time in the International Hockey League, East Coast Hockey League and the British Ice Hockey Superleague.
While serving with the Griffins, Noel-Bernier has also been the director of hockey for the Eagles Ice Center and Grand Rapids Blades youth program.
He also was the assistant coach for the Grand Rapids Christian High School varsity team during the past two seasons, including being named Total Package Hockey’s Michigan High School Division III Assistant Coach of the Year in 2013-14.
Noel-Bernier spent six seasons with minor professional teams, including two stints with the Muskegon Fury.
Following his retirement from playing, he returned to his alma mater, University of Nebraska Omaha where he served as director of hockey operations, video coordinator and assistant strength and conditioning coach for three seasons.
He then moved on to become an assistant coach with the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the United States Hockey League, a premier junior league.
In 2013, he joined Grand Rapids Christian’s staff and the Griffins staff in 2014.