Bio: Joe Coombs

A Brantford, Ontario, Canada native, Coombs has an extensive and impressive hockey resume—both as a player and a coach. He started his junior career in the Mid-Western Junior Hockey League (MWJHL) and at the Frederick Gunn School, a prep school in Connecticut. Coombs went on to play major junior hockey in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) in the 1990s before playing in the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) with the Columbus Chill. He also played in the United Hockey League (UHL) and Central Hockey League (CHL) in the late 1990s and early 2000s. In his final season as a player, Coombs played for the Lubbock Cotton Kings, a familiar WPHL opponent of the El Paso Buzzards.

Since 2001, Coombs has coached in the NAHL, USHL, CHL and CSHL. Between 2005 and 2010, he was the head coach of the Dubuque Thunderbirds where he earned three Central States Hockey League (CSHL) championship titles. As the Assistant Coach of the Dubuque Fighting Saints, he led his team to a Clark Cup Championship in 2011. Two season later, Coombs won his second Clark Cup, this time as the Associate Head Coach of the Fighting Saints. Most recently, he was the General Manager and Head Coach of the Rebels, an NAHL organization that has called Aston, Philadelphia, and Jamestown home in the past seven seasons. During the Rebels’ 2016-17 season, Coombs was named the NAHL (East) Coach of the Year, the NAHL (East) General Manager of the Year, and the NAHL Coach of the Year. Coombs was named the El Paso Rhinos’ Head Coach in May 2022.