Neilson and Kowalski back for Nottingham Panthers

Corey Neilson

Nottingham Panthers coach Corey Neilson and netminder Craig Kowalski have both agreed to stay with the club.

The pair have signed one-year deals, though Kowalski's includes an option for the club to extend it for an additional season.

If that option is taken up, the deal would see the 31-year-old finish his career in Nottingham.

Neilson will begin the season as player-coach, with a view to moving behind the bench full-time.

The 35-year-old joined Nottingham in 2006 under then-coach Mike Ellis.

He won the play-offs in his first season and the Challenge Cup the following year, before replacing Ellis in 2008.

After failing to win a trophy in his rookie season in charge, he has since lead Panthers to five titles in three seasons, including successive Challenge Cup and play-off doubles.

"We're delighted to have filled these two key positions," said Nottingham Panthers general manager Gary Moran.

"After being involved with four trophies in two seasons, we wouldn't have wanted anyone else."

Michigan-native Kowalski was signed by Neilson in 2010, following a season in Italy.

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