Senior Advisor/Director of Hockey Operations
Gene Ubriaco, who has been with the Wolves since the franchise’s inception in 1994, has served for the last 17 seasons as the team’s director of hockey operations and the last five as senior advisor.
Ubriaco was hired as the Wolves first head coach and guided the expansion team to a 34-33-14 record and a berth in the Turner Cup playoffs. He compiled a 61-61-20 record with the Wolves during a three-year span, which included a two-game interim stint during the 1996-97 season.
The 76-year-old Ubriaco began his coaching career at Lake Superior State University in 1972-73. Four years later, he led the Milwaukee Admirals to the Turner Cup playoffs to become the first International Hockey League coach to lead an expansion team into the postseason.
In 1988-89, Ubriaco moved on to the National Hockey League to coach the Pittsburgh Penguins. Under his tutelage, the Penguins shattered several team records and advanced to the Stanley Cup Playoffs after a seven-year absence. He posted a 50-47-9 record with Pittsburgh. Ubriaco gained international coaching experience by heading up the Italian Olympic Team during the 1992 Winter Games in Albertville, France.
Ubriaco, who coached professionally for 26 seasons, has been honored as Coach of the Year in the United States Hockey League (1973-74), Eastern Hockey League (1979-80), Central Hockey League (1982-83), and American Hockey League (1983-84).
The Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, native also played professional hockey for 10 years. He recorded 162 goals, 258 assists, and 420 points in 456 AHL games spanning nine seasons, which included a career-high 42 goals and 86 points during the 1965-66 season with the Hershey Bears.
Ubriaco spent his final three years as a player in the NHL with the Penguins (1967-68), the Oakland Seals (1968-69) and the Chicago Blackhawks (1969-70). He posted 39 goals, 35 assists, and 74 points in 177 regular-season games. He dedicates himself to numerous charitable causes, including the American Hearing Impaired Hockey Association (AHIHA) with which he has been involved since 1974.
Ubriaco and his wife, Nella, have a daughter, Francine, and a son, Gene, and live in the western suburbs.