Ducks hire McIlvane as head coach of Gulls

Photo: Jan-Philipp Burmann/City-Press GbR via Getty Images

The Anaheim Ducks announced today that Matt McIlvane has been hired as head coach of the San Diego Gulls, Anaheim’s primary development affiliate in the American Hockey League.

McIlvane replaces Roy Sommer, who retired at the end of the 2022-23 season, and becomes the fifth head coach in Gulls AHL history.

McIlvane, 37, has won five league championships in Europe over the last eight seasons, including back-to-back titles as head coach of EC Red Bull Salzburg in Austria in 2022 and 2023. He also won three championships in Germany as an assistant coach with EHC Red Bull München in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

In 2018, McIlvane served as an assistant coach for the German men’s Olympic team, capturing a silver medal at the PyeongChang games.

“Matt brings a winning pedigree to our organization in addition to a strong culture of development and performance,” said Ducks general manager Pat Verbeek. “Our players in San Diego will benefit from his leadership, philosophy, and his championship experience in Europe and the international level.”

A native of Naperville, Ill., McIlvane began his coaching career with Danville of the Federal Hockey League in 2011-12 and spent one season as an assistant with Orlando (ECHL) in 2012-13.

McIlvane was an eighth-round pick by Ottawa in the 2004 NHL Draft and skated in 15 games in the American Hockey League with the Binghamton Senators and Peoria Rivermen. He played four seasons of college hockey at Ohio State University.