Orlando's newest likely in-state rival, the Jacksonville Icemen, have named Jason Christie as their Head Coach and Vice President of Hockey Operations.  Jason is the all-time leader in ECHL wins as a Head Coach with 547, and is second in most games coached in league history, trailing John Marks by only one game.  He will tie John Marks for most career coaching years in the ECHL in the 2017-2018 season with 18.

Jason spent the last two seasons with the Tulsa Oilers, while previously coaching the Peoria Rivermen, Utah Grizzlies, and Ontario Reign in the ECHL.  He was an assistant coach with the Chicago Wolves of the AHL for two seasons, and the head coach of the Bloomington Prairie Thunder of the CHL.  In his 14 ECHL seasons, Christie's teams have only missed the playoffs three times, and had a sub-500 season twice.

In the ECHL, the ability to find and locate players falls largely on the Head Coach, who serves typically as the de-facto General Manager.  Given that Jacksonville is likely to be in the Solar Bears’ division, Christie’s experience and past success are likely to make it more difficult for the Solar Bears to make the playoffs, or advance beyond the first round.

The divisional alignments for the 2017-2018 season have not yet been finalized, but if it’s anything like last season, Jacksonville will sit neatly in the South alongside the Atlanta Gladiators, Cincinnati Cyclones, Florida Everblades, Greenville Swamp Rabbits, Norfolk Admirals, and South Carolina Stingrays.

More of Christie’s coaching statistics can be found here.

Jason Christie player statistics

1985-1986Fort Sask Rangers Minor MidgetAMHL29342761921985-1987Fort Sask Rangers Minor Midget1985-1987
1986-1987Saskatoon BladesWHL67203050731986-1988Saskatoon Blades1986-1988
1987-1988Saskatoon BladesWHL71203454791987-1989Saskatoon Blades1987-1989
1988-1989Saskatoon BladesWHL72334679981988-1990Saskatoon Blades1988-1990
Saskatoon BladesM-Cup40002Saskatoon Blades
1989-1990Saskatoon BladesWHL694265107701989-1991Saskatoon Blades1989-1991
1990-1991Telford TigersBD117253560501990-1992Telford Tigers1990-1992
Telford TigersAutumn Cup816132910Telford Tigers
1991-1992Columbus ChillECHL612856842181991-1993Columbus Chill1991-1993
1992-1993Hamilton CanucksAHL1132581992-1994Hamilton Canucks1992-1994
Columbus ChillECHL63204161190Columbus Chill
1993-1994Hamilton CanucksAHL286915361993-1995Hamilton Canucks1993-1995
Charlotte CheckersECHL2710142455Charlotte Checkers
1994-1995Portland PiratesAHL712040601301994-1996Portland Pirates1994-1996
1995-1996Portland PiratesAHL6572128861995-1997Portland Pirates1995-1997
1996-1997Portland PiratesAHL3341418421996-1998Portland Pirates1996-1998
Manitoba MooseIHL344121629Manitoba Moose
1997-1998Portland PiratesAHL8213121997-1999Portland Pirates1997-1999
Manitoba MooseIHL5412152747Manitoba Moose
1998-1999Columbus ChillECHL3592837701998-2000Columbus Chill1998-2000
1999-2000Milwaukee AdmiralsIHL100001999-2001Milwaukee Admirals1999-2001
Peoria RivermenECHL64213556199Peoria Rivermen