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Ryan Papaioannou

Ryan Papaioannou

Head Coach & General Manager

Ryan Papaioannou enters his 11th season behind the bench as head coach of the Brooks Bandits, and his 12th season overall with the organization in 2019-20.

A two-time Canadian National Junior A Champion, and a two-time AJHL Coach of the Year in 2012-13 and 2018-19, Ryan Papaioannou is the winningest and longest-tenured coach in franchise history, as well as a five-time AJHL champion.

Papaioannou has built the Bandits into a perennial contender in the AJHL and across national Canadian Junior A. In the last eight seasons, the Bandits have finished first in their division six times, first overall in the AJHL four times, won five league championships, in 2012, 2013, 2016, 2017 and 2019, and two national championships, in 2013 and 2019, with four total appearances at the national championship tournament.

The program has also become one of the foremost sources of NCAA Division I talent among Canadian Junior A teams, with a franchise-high 16 players committed to Divison I schools on the 2015-16 roster, the most of any team in the CJHL, and more than 85 Division I committed players over the last nine seasons.

In his most recent season at the helm, Papaioannou shepherded the Bandits to the most successful season in the history of the Alberta Junior Hockey League, and among the most successful in junior hockey history. The team went 57-3 in the regular season, shattering the AJHL record for wins and standings points in a season, as well as a new winning streak record with 33 consecutive victories. The team also became the first in league history to register a perfect 29-0 record in games on home ice. After capturing the team's fifth AJHL championship with a four-game sweep of the Spruce Grove Saints, the Bandits notched a perfect 6-0 record while hosting the 2019 National Junior A Championship, defeating the Prince George Spruce Kings 4-3 in the nationally televised final, becoming just the ninth team to ever win the title twice, and only the second Alberta-based team to ever do it, after the now-defunct Red Deer Rustlers won in 1971 and 1980.

In 2017-18, Papaioannou led the Bandits to their fifth-winningest regular season in team history, with a 45-14-1 regular season record. The team once again led the AJHL in NCAA Division I commitments, while reaching the AJHL South Division Final for the seventh consecutive year.

In 2016-17, Papaioannou led the Bandits to the fourth-winningest season in AJHL history, as the team finished first overall with a 51-5-4 record. The Bandits went 12-0-1 in the playoffs en route to their second straight AJHL championship, before becoming the first-ever undefeated team at the Western Canada Cup, going 5-0 and winning the regional title for the first time in franchise history. At the 2017 RBC Cup, the Bandits reached the national final for the second time, falling in overtime. But weeks later, the team experienced its first ever directly-drafted players into the NHL, as Cale Makar was selected fourth overall by the Colorado Avalanche, and Parker Foo was taken 144th overall in the 5th round by the Chicago Blackhawks.

In 2015-16, Papaioannou?s Bandits became the highest-scoring team in the AJHL in more than a decade, scoring 306 goals in a regular season in which the team went 49-9-2, and a further 12-1 in league playoffs, defeating the Spruce Grove Saints in 5 games to capture the team?s third league championship. After becoming the first team to ever post a 4-0 record at the Western Canada Cup round-robin, the Bandits defeated the Portage Terriers 2-1 to earn a berth at the 2016 RBC Cup.

In 2012-13, Papaioannou was named AJHL Coach of the Year and CJHL Coach of the Year after the best season in franchise history, a 53-4-3 regular season campaign capped off by the team?s second-ever AJHL title, and its first-ever RBC Cup national championship captured in Summerside, PEI. Papaioannou?s team set or tied AJHL records for regular season wins (53), fewest losses (4), most points (109), longest season-opening winning streak (20-0), and longest unbeaten streak in overlapping seasons, with a 31-game regular season win streak from the end of 2011-12 to the beginning of 2012-13.

In 2011-12, Papaioannou set team records for wins, fewest losses, goals for, and fewest goals allowed, as the Bandits registered a 47-7-6 regular season record and captured their first-ever AJHL championship with a 6-game win over the Fort McMurray Oil Barons.

Papaioannou became the Bandits? Head Coach and General Manager on October 16, 2009, after having joined the team as an Assistant Coach for the 2008-09 season.

Prior to his time in the AJHL, Papioannou coached in the Lethbridge Minor Hockey system, serving as head coach of the city's Bantam AAA team in 2005-06, its Midget AA team in 2006-07, and its Midget AAA team in 07-08.

As a player, Papaioannou spent three seasons as a goaltender in junior hockey from 2001 to 2004, spending time with the Calgary Hitmen, Lethbridge Hurricanes, and Seattle Thunderbirds of the Western Hockey League, as well as 1 season with the Moncton Wildcats of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. Papaioannou also dressed in 1 game for the Calgary Canucks of the AJHL in his final season of junior hockey, in 2003-04. Papaioannou is a graduate of the Calgary Northstars Midget AAA program.

As head coach of the Bandits, Papaioannou sports a regular season record of 329-90-35 (.763) and an AJHL playoff record of 103-31-10 (.750).

Papaioannou resides in Brooks with his wife, Jordana, and son, Ambrose.

Ryan Papaioannou - Brooks Bandits - Head Coaching Records


Reg. Season









2018-19 57-3 .950 23-6-1 .783 National Champions
2017-18 43-12-1 .777 9-5-1 .633  
2016-17 41-2-2 .933 21-1-2 .917 Western Canadian Champions
2015-16 49-9-2 .833 20-3-1 .854 AJHL Champions
2014-15 42-13-4 .746 13-6-1 .675 South Division Champions
2013-14 39-13-8 .717 5-4 .556  
2012-13 53-4-3 .908 21-5-3 .776 National Champions
2011-12 47-7-6 .833 13-6 .684 AJHL Champions
2010-11 34-18-7 .636 6-4 .600  
2009-10 24-24-3 .500 4-2-3 .611 Interim HC Sep 18-26, Became Head Coach Oct. 16






Overall: 564-147-48 (.775)

Contact Information

Cell: (403) 363-9205

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