The Blast have promoted assistant coach David Bascome to the head position, replacing longtime coach Danny Kelly.
Since Kelly took over the head coaching role in 2006, Bascome served as his assistant and the two guided the Blast to six championships, the last of three captured in the current Major Arena Soccer League coming in 2017-18.
Blast owner Ed Hale said Kelly’s departure was a mutual agreement.
During his professional indoor playing career, Bascome played five seasons with the Blast from 2003-08 — serving as a player coach in the final two.
"I am looking forward to being the head coach and continuing to lead the team in a positive direction. I love to win and will be building a climate for the franchise to succeed," he said.
After winning three straight championships from 2015-18, the Blast reached the MASL semifinals in the 2018-19 season and were 15-8 and in fourth place in the league’s Eastern Conference before the coronavirus pandemic halted this season.
Blast vice president/general manager Gianni Tumminello didn’t have to go far to find Kelly’s replacement.
"I am excited to work with David. We share many of the same ideas and his knowledge of the indoor game and the Blast culture is outstanding,” he said. “Our front office is going to be very strong. We want to win on and off the field."
Kelly, a member of the Blast’s Hall of Fame, has been with the franchise since 1999, his first seven as a standout player before taking over the coaching duties.
He was part of nine championship teams and posted a 226-90 mark in his 16 coaching seasons.
“He was an integral part of the Baltimore Blast as a player and coach by helping win nine championships. We had many, many good years together, but it was time to make a change,” Hale said. “The season ended March 7 and we had to begin marketing our camps and a few other things and I thought that I could get more by dealing with David and Gianni than Danny. I think it was more mutual. He may disagree, but I think the time had run its course.”
Kelly could not be reached for comment.