Ryane Clowe steps down as Growlers coach 'due to medical reasons'
NHL veteran retired from playing days due to lingering concussion issues
Ryane Clowe was forced to leave his playing days behind in 2015 after doctors told him he shouldn't play hockey again.
Now, the pride of Fermeuse, N.L., has stepped away from his duties as head coach of the ECHL's Newfoundland Growlers "due to medical reasons."
It's believed those reasons are linked to Clowe's concussion history, which has caused him to miss several games this season.
"I'd like to thank the Toronto Maple Leafs for the opportunity to become the first head coach in Newfoundland Growlers history," said Clowe in a news release.
"As a St. John's native, I was extremely honoured and proud to have held this position but my health is first priority for both my family and I."
Thank you, Ryane.<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/StandOnGuard?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#StandOnGuard</a> <a href="https://t.co/IgtnG95nCX">pic.twitter.com/IgtnG95nCX</a>—@NLGrowlers
Clowe reportedly suffered four concussions during his NHL playing days, with the last being on Nov. 6, 2014. He was in the second season of a five-year contract worth more than $24 million with the New Jersey Devils.
He took over as an assistant coach with the Devils in 2016, spending two seasons behind the bench before moving back home to Newfoundland as the Growlers kicked off operations in St. John's.
According to the team, Clowe will stay on with the Leafs organization in some capacity.
Clowe was dogged by medical issues since the season began, missing a long stretch of games throughout November.
The Growlers have thrived this season, both under Clowe and assistant coach John Snowden and currently sits third in the ECHL standings.
Snowden will take over as head coach for the remainder of the season.