Vancouver Canucks name Ryan Walter assistant coach to Vigneault

VANCOUVER – The Vancouver Canucks named Ryan Walter an assistant to head coach Alain Vigneault on Tuesday.

Since retiring after the 1992-93 season, Walter has earned a masters of arts degree in leadership/business, worked with professional athletes and executives on techniques to maximize their potential and done some motivational speaking.

He also joins associate coach Rick Bowness on the Canucks staff.

“I knew Ryan as a player and I heard a lot of good things about him as a person,” Vigneault said in a conference call. “He was a very competitive player.”

Walter, 50, played in 1,003 NHL games over 15 seasons with Washington, Montreal and Vancouver, recording 264 goals and 382 assists.

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He won the Stanley Cup with the Canadiens in 1986.

The native of New Westminster, B.C., was the second overall pick by the Capitals in 1978.

“Ryan’s experiences as a player and motivator will be a great asset to our coaching staff,” GM Mike Gillis said in a release. “He has proven himself in the game of hockey and business to be successful at everything he does.”

Added Vigneault: “We really felt comfortable with him, I think he felt comfortable with me and Mike … we just felt that it was a good fit for us.”