Former Spitfires GM fired from Barrie Colts

Former Windsor Spitfires general manager Warren Rychel is announced as the new head coach of the OHL's Barrie Colts, September 9, 2019. Photo courtesy of Barrie Colts.

Warren Rychel, the former general manager of the Windsor Spitfires, is out of a job after being fired from his position as interim head coach for the Barrie Colts.

The Colts announced that the hockey club had “parted ways” with Rychel on Monday, but team officials were mum on what led to the decision.

“It’s the first coach we’ve kind of had to part ways with. Everybody else that has been here has kind of left on their own, so it’s never easy. Never easy. We were thankful he was able to join us and unfortunately, it just didn’t work out,” said Colts Owner and President Howie Campbell, in a statement.

Rychel stepped in behind the bench at the beginning of this season after longtime head coach Dale Hawerchuk was diagnosed with stomach cancer and had to take a leave of absence.

Assistant Coach Todd Miller will now fill the role of interim head coach.

“It’s been tough on two ends of it, obviously Warren is a great guy and then one of my best friends in the world. [With] Dale Hawerchuk being out, it’s not the greatest situation to be doing this,” said Miller. “At the same time, I’m kind of wanting this for Dale and for the city to get into the playoffs. I want to have a team that people can be excited about every game they come to the rink and they go, ‘Wow, these guys are working so hard and just pushing every night.’”

Rychel served as the general manager and a part-owner for the Spitfires from 2006 until 2019 when he announced he was stepping down to pursue opportunities in the NHL. During his time in Windsor, Rychel helmed three Memorial Cup-winning teams in 2009, 2010 and 2017.

-With files from Mark Brown