Mo steps up to NHL with Anaheim Ducks coaching role

Mark Morrison, Fife Flyers
Mark Morrison, Fife Flyers

Former Fife Flyers coach, Mark Morrison, has landed a top job in the world’s greatest ice hockey league.

He has been named assistant coach with the Anaheim Ducks in the NHL.

Mark Morrison, Fife Flyers coach, training young kids in Kirkcaldy, circa 1996

Mark Morrison, Fife Flyers coach, training young kids in Kirkcaldy, circa 1996

He joins Randy Carlyle, former Manitoba Moose head coach and Stanley Cup Champion, behind the bench for the forthcoming season.

It marks the latest step up in a coaching career that begin in Fife and delivered unprecedented to the Kirkcaldy club.

Morrison – known to everyone as ‘Mo’ – was signed as a player to partner NHL star Doug Smail in 1994.

Jim Lynch identified him as the perfect foil for the speed and skill of Smail, and that proved to be one of the shrewdest signings in Flyers’ history.

Mark Morrison, Fife Flyers, wearing the club's 60th anniversary strip, October 1998

Mark Morrison, Fife Flyers, wearing the club's 60th anniversary strip, October 1998

Morrison’s work ethic made him a stand out player, and he went on to be an integral part of the club for over ten years.

In 1995-96 he stepped up as player-coach when the return of the club’s 1985 hero, Ron Plumb didn’t work out.

While the league structures changed and Fife moved from the Heineken era into the BNL and then NPL, Morrison remained committed to the team.

He led them to a Grand Slam, British Championship success and a host of silverware, and his reward was being named Coach of the Year three times – a feat which matched that of Flyers’ coach Al Rodgers in the late 1940s.

Mark Morrison, Fife Flyers and son Lance pictured on the ice in Kirkcaldy circa 1994/95 (Pic: John Hutton)

Mark Morrison, Fife Flyers and son Lance pictured on the ice in Kirkcaldy circa 1994/95 (Pic: John Hutton)

Off the ice, Morrison established Flyers’ long-lasting links with children’s hospice, Rachel House, becoming an official volunteer with them; a link that endures to this day.

He returned home in 2006 to take up a post of assistant coach with the Victoria Salmon Kings in the ECHL.

The club folded in 2011, and he moved on to the AHL with St John’s Ice Caps from 2011-15 and then Manitoba Moose.

Fife Flyers Christmas card shoot circa 1997 with Daryl Venters, Mark Slater and Mark Morrison. Pic was shot in the former boardroom Braehead House in the flat subsequently bought by Jack Vettriano

Fife Flyers Christmas card shoot circa 1997 with Daryl Venters, Mark Slater and Mark Morrison. Pic was shot in the former boardroom Braehead House in the flat subsequently bought by Jack Vettriano

Mark Morrison, player-coach Fife Flyers, in debate with official, Gordon Pirry, 1998 (Pic: John Hutton)

Mark Morrison, player-coach Fife Flyers, in debate with official, Gordon Pirry, 1998 (Pic: John Hutton)