The Boston Pride on Wednesday announced that former New York Rangers defenseman, Paul Mara, has been named head coach and will guide the team in their fourth season.
Mara, born in Ridgewood, New Jersey and raised in Belmont, Massachusetts played 12 seasons in the National Hockey League with the Rangers, Tampa Bay Lightning, Anaheim Ducks, Arizona (Phoenix) Coyotes, Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins. The 1997, seventh overall pick of the Lightning will be the third bench boss in the four-year history of the Pride.
The 38-year-old, defender served as an assistant coach on the 2018 gold medal winning USA Women’s Olympic hockey team. Mara succeeds Thomas Poeck behind the Pride bench. Poeck, stepped down after one season, to focus on his own player development program and his work with the Northern Cyclones of the United States Premiere Hockey League.
Mara said, “To have the opportunity to coach these incredible athletes in the NWHL, and especially do so with my hometown team, is a really exciting opportunity for me. My experience coaching women’s hockey with the national program has been so fulfilling, and I can’t wait to get started at the pro-level with the Pride.”
He continued, “We will be an up-tempo team. I want my players to be creative offensively, and we will be responsible in our own end. I am confident that we will have a very successful team, that is also a lot of fun to watch.”
Mara joins USA Head Coach Robb Stauber behind a NWHL bench for 2018-2019 season.
Mara becomes the second member of the USA National Team’s coaching staff to make the move behind the bench in the NWHL. After the league introduced the Minnesota Whitecaps as the fifth and newest club for the young league, USA head coach, Robb Stauber was named the club’s first coach.
NWHL Deputy Commissioner and Director of Player Development, Hayley Moore said, “Paul Mara brings an elite and diverse coaching resume to the Pride. Paul has been very successful developing players within the US National Program. We are proud to welcome Paul to the NWHL and look forward to the team and community he builds upon Boston.”