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BY MIKE GRIFFITH Californian staff writer firstname.lastname@example.org
Two weeks after being named head coach of the American Hockey League Hershey, Pa. Bears, former Condors coach Troy Mann was back in Bakersfield preparing for his second cross-country move in a year.
Mann was an assistant in Hershey for four years before taking the head job in Bakersfield last summer. He led the team to its first ECHL Western Conference Finals, falling in six games to eventual Kelly Cup champion Alaska.
The Edmonton Oilers who purchased the Condors in January, have not yet named a new coach for the Bakersfield but Mann said that coach will have a lot of tools at his disposal.
"I think whoever gets the position is in great shape," Mann noted. "The Condors may be in the ECHL and considered a double-A level but they run their franchise as an American League entity. From the front office with Matt Riley to the hockey ops, I think it is second to none.
"This is an attractive place to coach. With the Oilers on board, recruiting is easier and they want to win in Bakersfield."
And unlike when Mann took the helm last year, there are already a number of players signed to come back.
"There's some real good ... returning second-year pros that are on board already," Mann said. "The fact the Edmonton Oilers own the team is real good, especially when it comes to recruiting because you now they're going to put a number of (contracted players) here which makes recruiting (other players) easier. The pieces are in place."
The Condors are hosting a send-off for Mann on Thursday at 1 p.m. in the Tap Room, just off the concourse at Rabobank Arena.