Friday, 25 May 2018 13:39

Broncos looking for new head coach and business director with departure of Manny Viveiros and Dianne Sletten

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Swift Current Broncos Head Coach and Director of Player Personnel Manny Viveiros (centre) speaks at the media conference, May 25. Standing, from left, are Director of Business Operations Dianne Sletten and Broncos Board Chair Trent McCleary. Swift Current Broncos Head Coach and Director of Player Personnel Manny Viveiros (centre) speaks at the media conference, May 25. Standing, from left, are Director of Business Operations Dianne Sletten and Broncos Board Chair Trent McCleary. Matthew Liebenberg/Prairie Post

The Swift Current Broncos is looking to fill two key positions in the organization after an announcement about the future of Head Coach Manny Viveiros and Director of Business Operations Dianne Sletten.

 

The Broncos announced at a media conference on May 25 that Head Coach and Director of Player Personnel Manny Viveiros has resigned from the hockey club to accept a position in the National Hockey League  (NHL) as an assistant coach with the Edmonton Oilers.

Director of Business Operations Dianne Sletten will also be leaving the organization after six years, but she will still be with the Broncos during the transition period.

The announcements came at the end of a record-breaking season for the Broncos, both on the ice and on the business side.

Under the leadership of Viveiros the team captured the 2018 Ed Chynoweth Cup to become the Western Hockey League champions. Sletten oversaw a new record in season ticket sales while there have been record profits in concession and souvenir sales.

“Under Manny's leadership the team adopted a fast paced, high octane offence that brought renewed interest and energy and enthusiasm to our arena,” Broncos Board Chair Trent McCleary said. “One of the characteristics that impressed our board was Manny's ability to build and maintain positive relationships with players, staff, families and with our community. Not only did Manny create exciting on-ice play, he undoubtedly worked very hard to create both good citizens on and off the ice and memories that will last a lifetime. Unfortunately others have noticed Manny's unique skill set and abilities, and he would be moving on to other opportunities and other challenges.”

Viveiros said his time in Swift Current was one of the most memorable times of his career. 

“I'm so proud of the way our kids handled themselves this year on ice and more importantly off ice,” he noted.

He thanked the Broncos organization for taking a chance on him two seasons ago when he was coming back from Europe.

“It wasn't easy to get back into North American circles as far as hockey and they took a chance on me and trusted me with an opportunity here in Swift Current.,” he said.

He credited the members of his coaching staff for their contributions to the success of the team, and he thanked Sletten for making his job easier by taking care of the business side of the hockey operations.

“I'm so thankful to have this opportunity to have worked here in Swift Current and made some lifelong friends and I'm always going to be a Bronco for now and forever,” Viveiros said.

He added that he is certainly looking forward to the new challenges as a member of the coaching staff of the Edmonton Oilers.

“Any time you get an opportunity to go to the NHL you certainly have to look at it,” he said. “They're a real good organization and they're from my hometown. So I grew up watching them and there's a special place in my heart for the Oilers, there always will, and actually I've always been a fan of them too, and more importantly I think an opportunity to win real soon. I think last year was a year that they all agree wasn't something that anybody expected. I think that team has an opportunity to win real quick and real fast again.”

He feels it will be a good opportunity to be a part of that organization and to work with the Edmonton Oilers coaching staff and management.

“My short time being able to talk to them and talking to other people in the NHL said that this is really good staff, and it will be an opportunity for me to grow as a coach and learn and along the way hopefully help them out,” Viveiros noted.

Sletten, who was the first female assistant general manager in the WHL when she joined the Broncos in 2012, also thanked the organization for giving her the opportunity.

“It has been an amazing six years, for sure,” she said. “I never would have thought at the time it would end with such an amazing year, and being a part of a WHL championship team is an unbelieaveable experience – from being a part of the organization, but also of course being one of the biggest fans of the Broncos.”

She has no specific plans for the future yet and will therefore be available during the transition period until her position is filled.

“There's an opportunity out there that I'm kind of looking at and it excites me, but as far as leaving the organization, there actually isn't any real definite time frame on that,” she said. “I'll be there at least for a couple of months for sure to get through year end and to get the new season started, depending on when they get somebody hired. I've offered definitely to stay on as well as a transition for as long as that person wants. So we're really open to that and I certainly would never, ever leave the organization in a lurch. It means way too much to me.”

According to McCleary the Broncos will immediately start the process to find suitable candidates for these two positions.

“We'll have to find the right fit,” he said. “Manny has probably set the bar a little higher than it has been in the past, just because of the success that he's had, but we have our process that we'll go through and the same thing for the business operations as well. We'll gather resumes and get down to a short list. We will turn over rocks and kick tyres and we'll find the best people for the positions available.”

 
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Matthew Liebenberg

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