Posted by: Sports

Courtesy: Lincoln Stars

LINCOLN, Neb. - The Lincoln Stars have signed Assistant Coach Chris Michael to a two-year contract extension through the 2019-20 season, the team announced today.

Michael, 36, completed his first season with the Stars, working closely with the defense and penalty kill unit. In his first season, the Stars finished second in the USHL in both overall penalty kill conversion, stopping 84.7 percent (261-for-308) of all opposing power play chances, and in home penalty kill percentage, halting 90.2 percent (138-for-153) of opposing opportunities. In addition, the Stars finished fifth in lowest goals against per game (2.80) and held opponents to under 30 shots per game.

Off the ice, the Skokie, Ill. native assisted with game planning, scouting and game video and was an emotional leader and mentor in the locker room.

“Chris has earned his way to being an important part of our organization and hockey staff,” said Stars general manager Jon Hull. “Our players are very loyal to Chris, and that trust has been earned. The chemistry between Cody [Chupp}, Chris and Chris [Azzano] gives our players a great resource to get better every day.”

“Chris is the type of person and coach that you love being around,” said Stars head coach Cody Chupp. “I strongly believe that there is not a better assistant coach in the USHL. His passion for the game and enthusiasm to make everyone around him better are never ending and contagious. Chris is a tireless worker that our entire organization is fortunate to have.”

Prior to his time with the Stars, Michael spent four seasons with the Omaha Lancers with two as an assistant coach and two as Associate Head Coach, assisting in a similar capacity. He began his coaching career in 2008, serving six seasons with the Chicago Mission, including four years as Head Coach and guiding the Mission to a U16 National Championship in 2013. Michael graduated from Miami University in 2006 after playing four seasons for the RedHawks as well as two seasons with the Green Bay Gamblers from 2000-02.

“This just feels right to be in Lincoln,” said Michael. “After going over options with my family, the best decision was to stay with the Stars and continue what we’ve started to build. There is a lot of work left to be done, and we’re looking forward to next season. Lincoln has felt like home from day one, and I’m grateful to Cody, Jon and Ryan [Schiff] for allowing me to continue this opportunity with the Stars as well as to the strong support shown by our fans over this past season.”