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Wolves Wed Aug 27 2008

Fresh faces behind bench, in booth

While the Chicago Wolves' players have spent their offseason toting the Calder Cup from barbecue to barbecue, the organization has been busy filling some key spots off the ice.

Following former coach John Anderson's promotion to the parent Atlanta Thrashers, the Wolves found a new coach in their own backyard, hiring Downers Grave native Don Granato. Granato has 12 years of coaching experience, including an AHL title and Coach of the Year honors with the Worcester IceCats in 2001-01. He most recently was an assistant with the St. Louis Blues and a scout with the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Granato name is ubiquitous in Chicago hockey, as his brother Tony was a former NHL player (and current coach of the Colorado Avalanche) and sister Cammi Granato lead the U.S. to Olympic gold in 1998.

In the broadcast booth, the Wolves hired Joel Shaver after Pat Foley's prodigal return to the Blackhawks booth this summer. Shaver, who was the director of broadcasting with the Houston Aeros, joins current analyst Bill Gardner for all Wolves broadcasts on Comcast Digital Channel 100. While Foley will no doubt be missed by Wolves fans, Shaver's youth and AHL experience should provide a fresh voice to the organization.

The Wolves will begin their defense of the Calder Cup October 11 in Houston, and the home opener and banner raising ceremony occurs October 18 against Peoria. Full and partial season ticket packages are currently on sale by calling 1-800-THE-WOLVES or visiting the team's website, including new club seating options.

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