“I am extremely excited to join the Florida Panthers organization,” said Capuano. “I want to thank Vinnie Viola and Doug Cifu for putting their trust in me and Dale for giving me an opportunity to work with Bob, one of the great young minds in the game. My familiarity with the Panthers has grown a lot throughout the past few years and I’m eager to work with such a young, talented group of players.”
Capuano, 50, spent over a decade in the New York Islanders organization serving as head coach of the Islanders (2010-17) and assistant coach (2005-06). Prior to joining the Islanders behind the bench, Capuano served as head coach of the Islanders’ American Hockey League affiliate, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (2007-10) and served as assistant coach (2006-07).
As head coach of the Islanders, Capuano owned a 227-192-64 record and made three playoff appearances including the club’s 2013 postseason berth, their first since the 2007 playoffs.
The native of Cranston, R.I., began his coaching career in 1996-97 as an assistant coach with the Tallahassee Tiger Sharks (ECHL), before being named head coach and general manager of the Pee Dee Pride/Knoxville Cherokees (ECHL), a position he held until the 2005-06 season.
The former defenseman appeared in six NHL games for the Boston Bruins (1991-92), Vancouver Canucks (1990-91) and Toronto Maple Leafs (1989-90). Through his professional career, he played in 170 AHL games for the Newmarket Saints (1988-90), Springfield Indians (1989-90) and Maine Mariners (1991-92), recording 67 points (19-48-67). Capuano appeared in 97 International Hockey League games for the Milwaukee Admirals (1989-91) posting 63 points (23-40-63).