Utah Grizzlies: Still dreaming of the NHL

Grizz coach has come a long way since serious injury

Published: Wednesday, Dec. 3 2008 12:00 a.m. MST

One thing led to another, and Colley landed an assistant coaching job a season ago under Jason Christie with the Utah Grizzlies, who are an affiliate of Bridgeport and the Islanders. Colley praised the Islanders organization for the way they've treated him since Day One.

"It just goes to show with those guys how much faith they had in me and how much I gave them that they're willing to give me another opportunity, which I'm thankful for," says Colley.

That opportunity led to an even bigger one just 12 months later.

When Christie left to become an assistant coach for the Chicago Wolves of the AHL near the end of last summer, the Grizzlies organization moved to promote Colley to head coach.

Colley hopes to get back to the NHL one day, and he believes that his position with the Grizzlies will be a step in that direction.

"I think everything happens for a reason," Colley says. "But I feel like I'd still be playing (in the NHL) to this date if I didn't get hurt. I had my time in the NHL. It was shorter than I would've liked, but fortunately I got to live my dream and now hopefully I can get back up to that level one day, whether it be coaching or a (front-office) position."

Colley says he "couldn't be happier" about being in Utah right now, and he's looking forward to tackling the challenges that await him as coach of the Grizzlies.

"I've always had a lot of self pride where if I've set my mind to it so far I've achieved it," he says. "Right now I wanna get back up to the NHL. It may take five, 10, 15 or 20 years ... I wanna do the best at this right now and hopefully I can get back up as a head coach."

E-mail: drasmussen@desnews.com

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