The Boston Bruins continue a summer of transformation as they will be in the market for a new skills and skating coach after Kim Brandvold was hired as an assistant coach with the Boston University hockey program.
Brandvold was a constant, creative presence that came up with innovative drills and ways to challenge the NHL players, worked with the rest of the organization in vetting prospects and potential additions to the Boston Bruins and had a close working relationship with so many of Boston’s best players. So needless to say, it’s a significant loss for the Black and Gold that will somehow need to be filled.
Couple that with the retirement of longtime head Boston Bruins athletic trainer Donnie DelNegro, and there are a couple of strong, longtime employees leaving the organization ahead of next season.
The hiring was made by newly hired BU head hockey coach Jay Pandolfo, who of course was an assistant coach with the Boston Bruins for a handful of seasons before leaving for his alma mater prior to the 2021-22 NHL season.
“I’m thrilled that Kim is joining our staff,” said Pandolfo. “He is one of the most well-respected skills coaches in the game who has helped develop some of the elite skaters in professional hockey. Our players will benefit greatly from Kim’s knowledge and expertise. He will be a real asset for our program and I’m looking forward to working with him again.”
Brandvold, a Norway native that played his college hockey at UMass-Lowell from 2002-2006, served as a tireless skating and skills coach for the Bruins for the last seven years, and was a constant presence on the ice during practice days with the Boston Bruins. Brandvold even worked on the B’s bench as an assistant coach a couple of seasons ago when COVID-19 hit the Boston Bruins coaching staff and forced the B’s to dig into their organizational coaching depth.
In addition to his duties with the Bruins, Brandvold was head coach of the boys hockey team at Central Catholic High School from 2016-2018.
Beyond the coaching departure, the Boston Bruins announced the signing of 25-year-old Finnish prospect Joona Koppanen to a one-year, two-way contract with an NHL cap hit of $750,000. The 6-foot-5, 210-pound center had career-highs with 11 goals and 30 points in 62 games for the P-Bruins last season in his fifth pro season with Providence.