Riley Armstrong is the first head coach in franchise history, entering his second year at the helm of the Mariners. Armstrong came to Portland to from the Wheeling Nailers, the ECHL affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins, where he was an assistant coach from 2016-18.
Armstrong joined the Nailers in 2016 following the conclusion of a 12-year professional career. He signed with the San Jose Sharks in 2004 and played five seasons for the team’s American Hockey League affiliates in Cleveland, OH and Worcester, MA, making several trips to Portland as a visiting AHL player. He appeared in two NHL games for San Jose during the 2008-09 season before signing with the Calgary Flames as a free agent in 2009 and spending another season in the AHL.
Over the next five years, Armstrong made stops in some of Europe’s top professional leagues, playing in Russia, Finland, Germany and Sweden. He also had additional stints in the AHL and ECHL during that time before concluding his career with the ECHL’s Reading Royals. He played a total of 610 professional games, including 404 in the AHL, 75 in the ECHL and 129 in Europe, and recorded a total of 156 goals and 180 assists for 336 points.
Armstrong resides in Gorham with his wife Amber, daughter Peyton and son Ezra.