Hockey Operations Staff
Travis Green – Head Coach
Travis Green was named the first Head Coach in Utica Comets history on July 11, 2013.
He has spent his entire coaching career in the Western Hockey league (WHL), a major junior league based in Western Canada and the Northwestern United States.
The 42-year old took over as Head Coach of the Portland Winterhawks, during the 2012-13 season, following the suspension of Head Coach and General Manager, Mike Johnston. Under Green’s tutelage the Winterhawks compiled a 37-8-0-2 record, on the way to the WHL Championship Title. The Green-led Winterhawks went on to lose to the Halifax Mooseheads in the Memorial Cup Finals.
Prior to coaching, Green played 14 years in the National Hockey League, as a member of the New York Islanders, Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, Phoenix Coyotes, Toronto Maple Leafs, and Boston Bruins. During his time in the NHL he compiled 193 goals, and 455 total points. His team made the playoffs in seven of the 14 seasons. In the 1989 NHL Entry Draft, the Islanders selected Green in the second round (23rd overall).
Green’s best season came during the 1995-96 season with the New York Islanders. That season he notched career-highs in goals scored (25), assists (45), total points (70), and power play goals (14).
Paul Jerrard– Assistant Coach
Paul Jerrard joined the Utica Comets first coaching staff on August 12, 2013.
Paul spent the last two seasons in the National Hockey League as the Dallas Stars’ Assistant Coach. Prior to that, the Winnipeg, Manitoba native spent the previous eight years in the American Hockey League as an Assistant Coach with the Hershey Bears, Iowa Stars, Iowa Chops, and Texas Stars. He helped the Texas Stars reach the AHL Playoffs both years he coached there, including the Stars’ run to the Calder Cup Finals in the franchise’s inaugural season of 2009-10. Jerrard assisted Texas in posting a cumulative 87-56-17 record during the regular season, and a 16-14 record during the playoffs with Texas. In 2002-03, Jerrard was responsible for video as the Colorado Avalanche’s assistant coach. He also coached four years at his alma mater, Lake Superior State University from 1999-2002, as well as the 1997-98 season.
Before coaching, Jerrard spent 10 years as a defenseman in professional hockey. He was drafted in the 1983 NHL Entry Draft by the New York Rangers in the ninth round (173rd overall). He made his National Hockey League debut as a member of the Minnesota North Stars in 1988, and played in five games for Minnesota that season. Jerrard played parts of six seasons with the Kalamazoo Wings of the International Hockey League, and was a member of the 1997 Calder Cup winning Hershey Bears of the AHL.
Paul and his wife Cheryl have two children, Meaghan and Catherine.
Nolan Baumgartner– Assistant Coach
Baumgartner, 37, enters his first season as a Comets Assistant Coach and second season as the Canucks primary affiliate’s Assistant Coach. Prior to being named Assistant Coach with the Chicago Wolves to start the 2012.13 season, Baumgartner completed a 17-year professional playing career where he served in a leadership role as captain of both the Chicago Wolves and Manitoba Moose.
In 143 career regular season NHL games, Baumgartner recorded 47 points (7-40-47) and 69 penalty minutes with Washington, Chicago, Vancouver, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and Dallas. The Calgary, AB, native played 878 regular season AHL games, earning 390 points (83-307-390) and 815 penalty minutes. He also accumulated 29 points (4-25-29) and 85 penalty minutes in 86 career Calder Cup playoff outings, including an appearance in the 2009 Calder Cup Final as a member of the Manitoba Moose.
Baumgartner also represented Canada at the World Junior Championships in 1995 and 1996, winning gold at both tournaments and serving as captain in 1996.
Selected 10th overall by the Washington Capitals in the 1994 NHL Entry Draft, Baumgartner was a member of the Memorial Cup championship Kamloops Blazers in 1994 and 1995.
Pat Conacher – Director of Hockey Operations
Pat joined the Comets staff on August 12, as the franchise’s first Director of Hockey Operations.
Pat has coached and played over three decades of professional hockey including 521 career NHL games with a record of 139 points (63-76-139) and 235 penalty minutes. Most recently, Conacher was Head Coach of the Regina Pats of the WHL for two seasons from 2011-12 to 2012-13. His coaching career began in 2001-02 with the Phoenix Coyotes, where he spent three seasons as an Assistant Coach before Head Coaching appointments with the Utah Grizzlies and San Antonio Rampage.
Before coaching, Pat was a member of the Utica Devils over the course of three seasons playing a combined 108 games and recording 97 points (27-70-97) and 91 penalty minutes. The Edmonton, AB native was drafted by the New York Rangers 76th overall in the 1979 Entry Draft and played for six NHL teams: the New York Rangers, Edmonton Oilers, New Jersey Devils, Los Angeles Kings, Calgary Flames and New York Islanders. Conacher’s career includes two trips to the Stanley Cup finals, a championship with the Oilers in 1984 and a 24-game Cup run with Los Angeles in 1993.
Pat and his wife Susan have three children, Patrick, Dan and Cheyenne.
Dustin joins the Comets this season after working as the Peoria Rivermen’s Head Athletic Trainer since 2012. A New Hampshire native, Dustin received his Bachelor’s degree in Athletic Training, from Springfield College before receiving his Masters in Exercise and Sports Science from Ithaca College.
Prior to working with Rivermen, Dustin worked as a Graduate Assistant Athletic Trainer for Cornell. After Cornell, Dustin served as the Assistant Athletic Trainer for RPI, before working for the Florida Everblades of the ECHL, as the Head Athletic Trainer. With the Everblades, Dustin was a member of the 2011-12 team that won the Kelly Cup Championship.
Dustin is married to his wife Nancy, who works for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Taylor Anderson – Assistant Equipment Manager
Taylor joins the Comets for their inaugural season as the Assistant Equipment Manager. Prior to joining the Comets, Taylor served in the same capacity with the San Antonio Rampage.
Taylor received his Bachelor’s degree in Communications Studies from, and Master’s degree in Sports Administration, from Canisius college. He played four seasons with the Canisius Golden Griffins as a goaltender. After graduation, Taylor served two years at Canisius as the Equipment Manager before heading to San Antonio.
Taylor currently resides with his fiance, Marissa Brown.