The Stena Line Belfast Giants are pleased to announce the return of Rob Stewart as Assistant Coach for the 2017/18 season. Stewart’s service to the organisation stretches back to the inaugural season in 2000 and the Giants legend has his number #16 jersey retired in The SSE Arena.
In the 17 seasons of their existence, the Giants have won 8 Championships and Rob Stewart has been part of every single one of them, three as a player and five as a coach.
Along with Head Coach Dave Whistle, Stewart helped the Giants to the league title in only the 2nd season of the Giants existence in 2002. That season, Stewart was voted to the First All-Star Team, his 3rd All-Star Selection of his career. The following season, Stewart again starred for the Giants as they won their first Playoff Championship.
The following year, Stewart took over the Giants as Coach and fulfilled his end of the bargain with management to save money and finish in the ‘top 4’. During an injury spell in 2005/06, Rob Stewart re-joined the Giants playing staff as injury cover and again helped the organisation to another league championship.
He moved back to play and coach with the Romford Raiders in 2006/07 before eventually returning to the Giants as an Assistant Coach when Steve Thornton took over for the 2008/09 season. As part of the coaching staff, Stewart has won another four Championships, the Knock Out Cup and Challenge Cup in 2009, the Playoff Championship in 2010 and the Elite League titles in 2012 and 2014.
Stewart continues to be a loyal servant to the team he helped build back in 2000. He has also ensured the future of ice hockey is bright in Northern Ireland as the head coach of the Junior Giants Development Programme. In 2012 Rob Stewart was inducted into the Ice Hockey Journalists Hall of Fame and the following year, the Giants awarded Stewart a testimonial in recognition of his outstanding service to the organisation.
Adam Keefe on the appointment of Rob Stewart as Assistant Coach:
“With myself being a first time Coach, it was important to ensure we have Rob Stewart back alongside me. I believe working with Stewy and his endless experience & knowledge of the game will be a huge asset to have for us.”
“He is a Belfast Giants legend and continues to bleed teal. I am looking forward to getting started with Stew.”