MAPLE LEAFS HIRE RYAN HARDY AS SENIOR DIRECTOR OF MINOR LEAGUE OPERATIONS
The Toronto Maple Leafs announced today that Ryan Hardy is joining the organization as Senior Director of Minor League Operations. In his role, he will serve as General Manager of the Club’s American Hockey League affiliate, the Toronto Marlies, as well as its ECHL affiliate, the Newfoundland Growlers. Hardy, 35, had served as General Manager of the United States Hockey League’s Chicago Steel since the start of their 2018-19 season.
Hardy will oversee hockey operations for the Marlies and Growlers, including roster decisions and staffing. He will also work in unison with the Player Development department to track drafted prospects and participate in player personnel and scouting initiatives as needed.
“Over the last several seasons, I have developed a strong relationship with Ryan as his Chicago Steel team had great success on the ice, as well as success in developing players and staff,” said Toronto Maple Leafs General Manager Kyle Dubas. “As we evaluate how best to maximize the potential of all our prospects, we felt that adding Ryan to our management team and tasking him with managing the Marlies and the hockey side of our relationship with the Newfoundland Growlers would be a great benefit to the organization.”
Laurence Gilman, who had served as Marlies GM since the 2018-19 season, will be elevated to the role of Senior Vice-President of the Marlies while maintaining his roles as Assistant General Manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Governor of the AHL club. He will also continue to oversee the business operations of the Marlies.
Since Hardy’s arrival in May of 2018, the Steel have compiled an overall regular season record of 116-39-8-2 in 165 games for the most wins in the league over that stretch. The club has won the Anderson Cup as the league’s regular season champion in each of the last two seasons while it captured the USHL’s Clark Cup Championship this past season.
Hardy was named the USHL’s General Manager of the Year, as voted on by his peers, in two of his three seasons – 2018-2019 and 2020-21. In the 2019-20 season, the Steel set the USHL record for highest winning percentage (.847) before the season was cut short due the COVID-19 pandemic.
Since his first season with the Steel, the Madison, Connecticut native has overseen 10 Steel alumni selected in the NHL Draft, including five from the 2019-20 roster, the most of any independent junior team that season.
Hardy joined the Steel from the Boston Bruins where he spent two seasons as an amateur scout. Prior to joining the Bruins, Hardy spent parts of four seasons (2013-2017) with USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program, serving as Director of Player Personnel, Assistant Director of Player Personnel and Regional Scouting Manager during that time.
In addition to his work in scouting and player personnel, Hardy has coaching experience at the NCAA level with Sacred Heart University and Williams College, and at the junior hockey level with the Springfield Jr. Blues (NAHL).