Flint Firebirds coaches fired, league announces sanctions - WNEM TV 5

Flint Firebirds coaches fired, league announces sanctions

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Source: Flint Firebirds Source: Flint Firebirds
FLINT, MI (WNEM) -

The Flint Firebirds coaches have been fired, again. And now the Ontario Hockey League is issuing sanctions keeping the owner and new coach, keeping them from all hockey operations.

The team announced Wednesday afternoon that Head Coach John Gruden and Assistant Coach Dave Karpa have been let go, effective immediately.

This is the second time this season that has happened.

On Nov. 8, 2015 the Firebirds coaching staff was fired. When that happened, the players walked into the front office and turned in their jerseys.

The next day the coaching staff was reinstated after Team Owner Rolf Nilsen said the decision was "an irresponsible mistake". Read his statement here.

Firebirds Director of Hockey Operations, Sergei Kharin, was tapped to become the Firebirds interim head coach. Petr Jonak will continue to serve as assistant coach.

Thursday the OHL issued sanctions against Mr. Nilsen and his appointees on the management and coaching staff, including Sergei Kharin. They are all suspended from Flint Firebirds' hockey operations until further notice.

The Firebirds must also provide, at their own cost, counseling services for the players.

The league will also continue to investigate the actions of Rolf Nilsen and other Firebirds representatives.

A meeting will be held on Thursday with the players and the league to further discuss the situation.

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