Longtime Sharks assistant general manager and vice president Wayne Thomas announced his retirement from hockey today. Thomas, 67, spent the past 22 years with the Sharks organization, initially serving as an assistant coach before moving into the AGM role where he oversaw the club's American Hockey League affiliate during an era in which it developed the likes of Joe Pavelski, Logan Couture, Jonathan Cheechoo, Christian Ehrhoff and Ryane Clowe.
Thomas also spent extensive time over the last decade as the team's primary day-to-day goaltending coach and the Sharks moved quickly to name a replacement in Johan Hedberg, heavily rumored for about a week to be Thomas' successor in that position.
A pupil of the late, great Warren Strelow, Hedberg played 33 games in the Sharks organization early in what would be a 373-game NHL career as goaltender of the Penguins, Stars, Canucks, Thrashers and Devils. It's also possible Evgeni Nabokov will have a role in working with Sharks goaltenders as Doug Wilson confirmed earlier in the offseason that discussions are ongoing between the club and Nabokov about bringing the former San Jose goalie back into the organization.
The team also confirmed an earlier report that Bob Boughner will be an assistant coach this season to Peter DeBoer.