Tri-City Americans: Former coach John Olver named Bakersfield GM

April 11, 2013 

The Bakersfield Condors and Team President Matthew Riley announced today that John Olver has been named general manager. Olver will manage the hockey operations department, and will head up the search for the team's next head coach, as well as oversee player personnel.

Olver, 54, has a long history of building championship-caliber teams, making a remarkable seven appearances in the league finals during his nine seasons as a head coach. He served as the head coach and vice president of hockey operations of the Idaho Steelheads in the West Coast Hockey League and the ECHL from 2000 - 2005. He also was the head coach and general manager of the Tacoma Sabercats in the WCHL from 1997-00, and the GM of the Fresno Falcons from 1995-97, serving as head coach in 1995-96.

He guided the Steelheads to an ECHL Kelly Cup title in 2003-04, won a WCHL Taylor Cup Championship with Tacoma in 1998-99, and is the only coach to win a title in both leagues. In addition to his two championships, Olver has led his team to the finals on five other occasions, including three straight with the Sabercats. Olver was awarded the WCHL Coach of the Year four times, and he also coached two All-Star Teams in the WCHL.

The North Burnaby, British Columbia native played an integral role in the foundation of the WCHL, and in helping Bakersfield land their first professional hockey team in 1995 (the Bakersfield Fog).

Olver went from Idaho to Northern Michigan University, taking advantage of an opportunity to coach his oldest son, Darin, while serving two seasons as assistant coach. He then headed to Des Moines, Iowa to serve as president and general manager of the American Hockey League's Iowa Stars in 2007-08.

Since 2009-10, he has served as GM/head coach of the Idaho Jr. Steelheads in the Western States Hockey League, winning the league title in each of the past three campaigns. This season, his team rolled to a 57-1-1 record en route to also claiming the AAU National Championship.

Olver was the first coach of the Tri-City Americans (1988-89), leading the team to a 33-34-5 record. He lasted one year with the team.

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