Posts Tagged ‘Hiring’

The Winnipeg Jets are finalizing a deal to name Rick Bowness as the club’s new head coach, according to TSN’s Darren Dreger.

Bowness stepped down as Dallas Stars bench boss in May after three seasons. Peter DeBoer then took the job after being fired by the Vegas Golden Knights.

Paul Maurice stepped down as Jets coach in December. Dave Lowry finished the season behind the bench on an interim basis. Winnipeg missed the playoffs for the first time since 2017 after finishing sixth in the Central Division with a 39-32-11 record.

The Jets heavily pursued Barry Trotz for their head coaching vacancy, but the Winnipeg native and 2018 Stanley Cup winner informed the club he won’t coach anywhere next season.

Bowness has a long track record behind an NHL bench. The 67-year-old coached the original Jets before they relocated, the Stars, Boston Bruins, Ottawa Senators, New York Islanders, and then-Phoenix Coyotes. He’s also served as an assistant with the Vancouver Canucks and Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Boston Bruins named former Dallas Stars bench boss Jim Montgomery the 29th head coach in franchise history, the team announced Friday.

“Jim has a winning history, and throughout the interview process, he conveyed his ability to connect with all types of players while also demanding that his teams play with structure. We are excited for Jim to begin to make his imprint on our team,” general manager Don Sweeney said.

Montgomery served as an assistant coach on the St. Louis Blues’ bench for the past two seasons. He was named head coach of the Stars before the 2018-19 campaign and led them to the playoffs after they failed to qualify the previous two seasons.

The Stars fired him midway through the following campaign due to unprofessional conduct. Less than a month after his dismissal, Montgomery revealed that he checked into rehab for alcohol abuse.

Overall, the Stars went 60-43-10 under Montgomery.

Montgomery replaces Bruce Cassidy, who was fired by the Bruins after they were eliminated by the Carolina Hurricanes in the first round of the playoffs.

Boston made the postseason in each of Cassidy’s six seasons as head coach, but the team only advanced past the second round once. The Bruins fell to the Blues in seven games in the 2019 Stanley Cup Final.

Cassidy was hired by the Vegas Golden Knights shortly after his departure from Boston. The Bruins announced that they signed Sweeney to a multi-year contract extension earlier this week.

The Detroit Red Wings hired Tampa Bay Lightning assistant coach Derek Lalonde to be their next head coach.

Lalonde spent the last four seasons serving on the Bolts’ bench and he helped the team to three straight finals appearances as well as two consecutive Stanley Cup championships in 2020 and 2021.

“I’m very pleased to announce Derek as our new head coach,” Red Wings general manager Steve Yzerman said. “He has proven himself as an excellent coach at every level and has spent the last four seasons in the National Hockey League as part of a very successful program in Tampa Bay. We feel he is ready to take the next step in his career as the head coach of the Detroit Red Wings.”

Lalonde was named an assistant coach in Tampa in 2018 when Yzerman served as the team’s vice president and general manager.

This is Lalonde’s first full-time head coaching job at the NHL level, but he was previously the head coach of the AHL’s Iowa Wild from 2016-18 and of the ECHL’s Toledo Walleye from 2014-16.

He also briefly stepped in as head coach for the Lightning in late December when Jon Cooper was placed in COVID-19 protocol. The Bolts won two games under Lalonde’s guidance.

Lalonde is replacing Jeff Blashill, who parted ways with Detroit after the 2021-22 season. The rebuilding Red Wings finished in sixth place in the tough Atlantic Division with a 32-40-10 record and failed to make the playoffs for a sixth straight season.

The young squad continued to make strides despite another losing campaign. Rookies Moritz Seider and Lucas Raymond especially injected plenty of excitement into Hockeytown.

“I’m thrilled to be named head coach of the Red Wings. … I’m ready to get to work with our group. There’s a very bright future ahead in Detroit,” Lalonde said.

The Charlotte Hornets hired Steve Clifford to return for a second stint as their head coach, the club announced Friday.

The agreement is a three-year deal that will pay Clifford $4 million in each of the first two seasons, sources told Rod Boone of The Charlotte Observer. The contract also reportedly contains a team option.

“I’m happy to be returning to Charlotte, and I want to thank (franchise owner) Michael Jordan, (general manager) Mitch Kupchak and (assistant GM) Buzz Peterson for this opportunity,” Clifford said in a statement. “This is an exciting young team with a lot of talented pieces.

“Charlotte is a great city and I know first-hand the passion that Hornets fans have for this franchise. I can’t wait to get back to town and start working with our players.”

Charlotte’s decision to bring back Clifford comes days after Kenny Atkinson reportedly turned down an offer in order to remain an assistant with the Golden State Warriors.

Clifford was behind Charlotte’s bench from 2013-18, managing the team to a combined 196-214 record over five seasons. He led the club to the playoffs twice but failed to win a series; it was swept in their first appearance by the Miami Heat in 2014 before falling to Miami in seven games in 2016.

After being fired as head coach in April 2018, Clifford took over the Orlando Magic, where he went 96-131 in three seasons. Both sides agreed to part ways in June 2021.

Atkinson was never officially confirmed as Charlotte’s replacement for James Borrego but had apparently edged former Houston Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni in the race. Following Atkinson’s withdrawal, Jordan met with D’Antoni again Tuesday to discuss the opening, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

The Chicago Blackhawks are set to name Luke Richardson as the team’s next head coach, Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli reports.

Richardson has been an assistant coach with the Montreal Canadiens since 2018. He’s also worked as an assistant with the Ottawa Senators and New York Islanders in his career, along with a stint as head coach of the Senators’ AHL affiliate.

The 53-year-old had a playing career spanning 1,417 NHL games with the Toronto Maple Leafs, Edmonton Oilers, Philadelphia Flyers, Columbus Blue Jackets, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Senators.

Derek King ended the 2021-22 season as the Blackhawks’ interim head coach. He took over for Jeremy Colliton in November but couldn’t get Chicago on track as the club finished seventh in the Central Division with a 28-42-12 record.

The Boston Bruins, Detroit Red Wings, and Winnipeg Jets are the remaining teams with a head coaching vacancy.

The Florida Panthers hired former Winnipeg Jets bench boss Paul Maurice to replace Andrew Brunette as their new head coach.

Maurice is joining the Cats on a three-year deal, according to TSN’s Darren Dreger.

The 55-year-old chose to step down as the Jets’ head coach in December, telling reporters the players needed a different voice. Winnipeg went 13-10-5 under his tenure to start the campaign.

Brunette served as Florida’s interim head coach from October after Joel Quenneville stepped down. The talented Panthers squad performed superbly under his direction, and Brunette helped the team capture the Presidents’ Trophy.

The Panthers set multiple benchmarks in 2021-22, including a franchise-high 58 wins, and they broke the salary-cap era record for most goals scored in a single season.

Florida didn’t perform as well in the playoffs, however, resulting in a second-round sweep at the hands of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Panthers will offer Brunette a “significant role” to remain within the organization if he wants it, sources told Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli.

Brunette had been an assistant coach with the club since 2019 before being promoted in 2021-22. The Panthers went 51-18-6 after he took over on an interim basis.

An NHL coaching veteran of 24 years, Maurice has been behind the bench for the fourth-most games in NHL history (1,684) and ranks seventh all-time in wins (775).

Maurice kicked off his head coaching career with the Hartford Whalers in 1995 and stayed with the franchise – as they became the Carolina Hurricanes – until 2003-04. He then spent two campaigns with the Toronto Maple Leafs and had a second stint with Carolina before joining Winnipeg.

The Jets went 315-224-62 under Maurice’s leadership and made the postseason five times, including one conference finals appearance in 2018.

The Dallas Stars are naming Peter DeBoer their next head coach, reports Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

DeBoer was fired by the Vegas Golden Knights after failing to reach the playoffs this season. The Stars’ position opened when veteran bench boss Rick Bowness opted to step down after Dallas was eliminated by the Calgary Flames in Round 1.

Bowness coached Dallas for three seasons, guiding the club to the Stanley Cup Final in 2020.

DeBoer was unable to help an injury-ravaged Golden Knights roster to the playoffs in a year they were expected to compete for the Stanley Cup. He joins the Stars with a career record of 513-379-123 and a 68-55 mark in the playoffs.

The 54-year-old has made the Stanley Cup Final twice – in 2012 with the New Jersey Devils and 2016 with the San Jose Sharks.

With Dallas’ post reportedly filled, the Boston Bruins, Detroit Red Wings, and Winnipeg Jets are the three teams left searching for a new head coach this offseason.

The Philadelphia Flyers officially named John Tortorella the 23rd head coach in franchise history Friday.

The agreement reportedly brings the veteran to the City of Brotherly Love on a four-year deal worth roughly $4 million per season, according to ESPN’s Kevin Weekes.

Tortorella was identified as one of Philadelphia’s candidates in May. The 63-year-old will be the Flyers’ seventh head coach in the last 10 years after the team fired Alain Vigneault this past season and had Mike Yeo complete the campaign in an interim role.

The Flyers have missed the playoffs in three of the past four years after finishing last in the Metropolitan Division in 2021-22.

“John demands the best out of his players every single game. He is a Stanley Cup champion and has a lengthy track record of both regular-season and playoff success,” general manager Chuck Fletcher said. “During the interview process, we discussed a number of factors that are crucial to bring this team immediate success, and it became clear to me that his vision and style make him the right person to restore a winning environment to our locker room.”

ESPN hired Tortorella as a studio analyst when he and the Columbus Blue Jackets mutually agreed to part ways after six seasons in 2021. The outspoken bench boss has also coached the Tampa Bay Lightning, New York Rangers, and Vancouver Canucks, winning a Stanley Cup in 2004 and two Jack Adams Awards along the way.

The Vegas Golden Knights hired former Boston Bruins bench boss Bruce Cassidy as their next head coach.

Cassidy guided the Bruins to the postseason in all six of his years at the helm, including a trip to the Stanley Cup Final in 2019. The 57-year-old won the Jack Adams Award in 2019-20 after leading the Bruins to the Presidents’ Trophy, and he ranks 12th all time in points percentage among coaches with at least 82 games.

The Bruins were a premier defensive team under Cassidy. During the five seasons he coached from start to finish, Boston never ranked outside the top five in goals against per game or the top three in expected goals against per 60 minutes at five-on-five, according to Natural Stat Trick.

Cassidy’s first stint as an NHL head coach did not go as well, though. The Washington Capitals fired him midway through his second year in 2003-04 after posting a 47-47-9-7 record. He then coached the OHL’s Kingston Frontenacs before joining the AHL’s Providence Bruins for three years as an assistant and five years as the head coach. Cassidy made his NHL return in 2016-17.

Fittingly, the general manager who hired Cassidy in Washington, George McPhee, is currently the Golden Knights’ president of hockey operations.

The Ottawa native will become the third head coach in Golden Knights franchise history. Gerard Gallant led Vegas to the Stanley Cup Final in his first year and a playoff berth in his second. However, he was fired midway through his third campaign. Peter DeBoer guided the Knights to back-to-back league semifinal appearances, but the team fired him after failing to make the postseason in 2021-22.

Although Vegas missed the playoffs, Cassidy is taking over a veteran Golden Knights roster in win-now mode.

The Montreal Canadiens named Martin St. Louis the 32nd head coach in franchise history on Wednesday, dropping the interim tag he was assigned this past winter.

St. Louis signed a three-year deal through the 2024-25 season.

“Martin is a proven leader, a great communicator with a deep understanding of and passion for the game of hockey. His arrival brought a renewed energy to our group, and we look forward to him returning behind the bench to continue guiding our team for the foreseeable future,” general manager Kent Hughes said.

Montreal hired St. Louis for his first NHL coaching gig in February. He guided the Canadiens to a 14-19-4 finish after the club started the season 8-30-7 under Dominique Ducharme.

St. Louis’ arrival also sparked a major turnaround for rookie sniper Cole Caufield, who bagged 22 goals in 37 contests after the coaching change.

The Habs finished last in the league standings despite improvement under St. Louis, and will pick first overall at the draft this offseason.