A big change in the coaching ranks of the SJHL happened over the weekend.
Saturday morning, the Nipawin Hawks announced they were relieving head coach and general manager Doug Johnson of his duties effective immediately. In a press release, the team thanked Johnson for his 11 ½ years with the club and his help with reviving the organization.
They stated it was a difficult choice to make, but believed it was now time for a change.
In the interim, Tad Kozun will be behind the bench for the Hawks.
Before becoming head coach of the Hawks, Johnson played with the team from 1993-1996. After that, he spent six seasons playing minor pro with various teams in the United States. He moved into coaching, starting as the assistant coach with the Billings Bulls of the NAHL in 2004, and served as head coach in 2005. He then moved on to the Odessa Jackalopes of the CHL in the 2006 season, and was an assistant coach with the Omaha Lancers of the USHL from 2008 to 2010, before assuming the top job with Nipawin.
Over the course of his 11 seasons with Nipawin, Johnson compiled a record of 342-207-25-31 (.612 winning percentage), winning the league championship in 2018. At the time of his release, Johnson was the second-longest tenured active coach in the SJHL, behind only Flin Flon's Mike Reagan.