The ECHL’s Wheeling Nailers just earned their 1,000th win for the organization on Wednesday night. As part of the celebration, several of the team’s alumni sent pre-recorded personal messages congratulating the organization on the milestone. Capitals bench boss Peter Laviolette was one of those alumni.
Coach Laviolette’s message reflected fondly on his family’s time in West Virginia.
Laviolette’s first head coaching job was with the Wheeling Nailers during the 1997-98 season. He would later depart for the head coaching position with the AHL’s Providence Bruins after just one season in Wheeling.
Laviolette and the Providence Bruins would win the Calder Cup in his first season in Providence. He would spend two seasons in Providence before becoming an assistant coach with the Boston Bruins in 2000. Laviolette would get his first head coaching job in the NHL with the New York Islanders in 2001. Laviolette went from head coach in Wheeling to head coach in the NHL in just four years.
Full video by the Wheeling Nailers: