The Buffalo Bandits today announced the team has signed head coach John Tavares to a three-year contract.
Tavares enters his seventh season as a member of the Bandits coaching staff and his fourth season as the team’s head coach. In his tenure as head coach, Tavares has led the team to a 35-12 regular-season record. He joined the coaching staff on Sept. 25, 2015 following an illustrious playing career.
Tavares finished his first season as head coach with a 14-4 regular-season record, an appearance in the NLL Finals, and as the recipient of the NLL’s Les Bartley Award as the league’s top head coach. During the 2021-22 season, Tavares led the Bandits to a league-best 14 wins in the regular season and an appearance in the NLL Finals. Tavares was a finalist for the Les Bartley Award in 2022.
Tavares concluded his playing career as the NLL’s all-time leader in games played (306), goals (815), assists (934) and points (1,749), as well as second in league history in loose-ball recoveries (2,169). He played in a league-record 10 NLL All-Star games and was named to the NLL All-Pro team a record 19 times, while winning the league’s Most Valuable Player award in 1994, 2000 and 2001.
The Mississauga, Ontario native served as an alternate captain for the Bandits for 18 seasons before being named captain prior to the 2013 season. He led the team in scoring in 17 of his 24 seasons with the franchise, including 10 consecutive seasons from 1999 to 2008.
Tavares was a part of four Bandits championship teams (1992, 1993, 1996 and 2008), and tops the NLL’s all-time playoff list in games played (38), goals (84), assists (116) and points (200).