Bill Dineen, a hockey icon who played with and later coached the legendary Gordie Howe, has died at 84.
The American Hockey League confirmed in a statement that Dineen died Saturday at his home in Lake George, N.Y.
"Bill Dineen devoted his career to our sport, winning two Stanley Cups with the Detroit Red Wings, shaping the lives of numerous players during decades of coaching and crafting a hockey legacy that carries on today through his sons," NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement. "The National Hockey League sends heartfelt condolences to the Dineen family on the passing of this distinguished and greatly respected individual."
He made more of an impact as a player in the AHL, where he was a four-time 20-goal scorer over six seasons with Buffalo, Cleveland, Rochester and Quebec.
He went into coaching after retiring as a player, taking the reins of the WHA’s Houston Aeros for six years starting in the 1972-73 season. He helped the Aeros win Avco Cup titles in 1974 and 1975 with teams featuring Howe, and Howe’s sons Mark and Marty.
Dineen was named the WHA’s coach of the year in 1977 and 1978. He spent a final WHA season as coach of the New England Whalers but was fired after 71 games with the Whalers in fourth place.
Dineen later coached the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers for the 1991-92 and 1992-93 seasons, giving him a chance to coach his son Kevin.
He also spent six years as coach of the AHL’s Adirondack Red Wings, leading them to league titles in 1986 and 1989.
Dineen was inducted into the AHL Hall of Fame in 2014.
"During his time as a player and coach, and in the values he instilled in his family, Bill Dineen created a legacy of greatness in the American Hockey League that still resonates today," David Andrews, AHL president and chief executive officer, said in a statement.
Dineen’s sons Shawn, Peter, Gord, Kevin and Jerry all have careers in professional hockey.
Kevin Dineen, a veteran of 1,188 NHL games, is a former head coach of the Florida Panthers and is currently an associate coach with the Blackhawks.
Gord Dineen played 529 games in the NHL and is an associate coach of the AHL’s Toronto Marlies.