LONDON KNIGHTS COMPLETE 2020 CHL IMPORT DRAFT

Best Sens by number- #49

A lot of players have actually worn #49, 7 player in fact. Despite that fact, a lot of the players were fringe/call-ups or switched their numbers once they were a more established part of the NHL roster.
Unfortunately, the current owner of #49, Scott Sabourin doesn’t rank as being our best #49.
The best #49 in Ottawa Senators history: Chris Kelly.
Remember when I picked Shaun Van Allen over Kelly as the best #22? This is why. I was torn between both. Didn’t know who to go with, but then I remembered Kelly wore #49 for 4 games in the 2003-04 season, which was the length of time he spent with the big club that season.
Kelly began his junior career in junior “A” in 1996-97 with the Aurora Tigers, who were at the time part of the old Metro Junior “A” hockey league and Orangeville Crushers of the OPJHL (now OJHL). The London Knights were impressed with his play in the Met and OPJ and drafted Kelly.
Kelly had an impressive draft year in 1998-99, 36 goals and 41 apples, totaling 77 points in 68 games. His game wasn’t just offense, he was good defensively and his 60 penalty mins showed scouts that he could provide sandpaper if needed. The Sens drafted Kelly that year in the 3rd round.
After his overage year in the O, Kelly spent 2 seasons in the Senators’ minor league system. He spent the majority of the year in the AHL with Grand Rapids but spent a cup of coffee in the UHL with the Muskegon Fury in 2001-02. Kelly spent the entire 2002-03 season in the AHL with the Binghamton Senators (The Sens moved their AHL affiliation to Bingo that year). During this time, Kelly showed that he was defensively responsible and that he was physically able to make it in pro hockey.
Chris Kelly’s first taste at NHL action was short-lived, a 4 game stint with the Sens in 2003-04 where Kelly did nothing of note, with the exception making himself eligible for the best #49 in Sens history. The rest of the year was spent in Binghamton, as was 2004-05 due to the NHL lockout.
After that lockout year, he made the Sens out of camp and switched to #22. Kelly played at least 81 of the 82 games in 5 of his first 5 seasons, including back-to-back 82 game campaigns his rookie and sophomore years in the NHL. Kelly’s established himself as a 20-35 point guy and played up the middle on the Sens 3rd and 4th lines. He was always in the right spots and could be trusted in any situation on the ice.
At the 2011 deadline, in his 6th full NHL season, Kelly was traded to the Bruins. An emotional trade, he added depth to an already deep Bruins roster poised for a long playoff run. Kelly played all 25 games and got to lift the cup in game 7 along with former teammates Zdeno Chara and Shane Hnidy.
The next 4 season were spent with the Bruins. His contract expired July 1st, 2016 and the Bruins opted to not re sign the 36 year-old Kelly. Later that month, Kelly returned home. He signed a one-year deal. Like old times, he played all 82 games but wasn’t re-singed by the Sens at the end of 2016-17.
Kelly began the 2017-18 with a failed PTO in Edmonton. A few months later, a few days after his 37th birthday he signed with the Belleville Senators. He was released from the Belleville Senators so he could join team Canada for the Spengler Cup, in preparation for the 2018 Olympics. The NHL wasn’t sending players so Kelly was one of those chosen to represent the Canada. We won the Spengler Cup and finished with a Bronze Medal at the Olympics, Kelly leading the was as our captain.
After the Olympics, the Anaheim Ducks signed Kelly for the duration of the 17-18 season. Chris Kelly retired at its end.
After announcing his retirement in 2018, the Senators named Kelly a development coach. When Guy Boucher was fired near the end of the 2019 season, Kelly served as an assistant coach under interm head coach Marc Crawford. Kelly left the Senators organization after that year and returned to Boston, currently working as a development coach for the B’s.
I saw him at Home Depot in Barrhaven buying paint once. Nice guy.
Michel Picard, Danny Bois , Francis Lessard, Fredrik Claesson, Christopher Didomenico have also worn #49.
Here are a few Chris Kelly highlights from his time here:
Goal, BUF, 2011
Fight vs Torrey Mitchell, @MTL, 2017
Goal, WSH, 2010 (Russian Commentary)
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Maple Leafs 2019 Prospects Tournament - New Players of Interest

This list is comprised of the players that have been invited to be a part of the Maple Leafs 2019 Prospects Tournament Roster that have never played for an affiliate of the team and were not drafted by the Maple Leafs.
Maple Leafs 2019 Prospects Tournament Roster
Players
Name Age (The age the player will be for the majority of the 2019-2020 season) Position Hand Height/Weight Team (Last Season) League (Last Season) Points/82 (Last Season - Includes Playoffs) Goals/82 (Last Season - Includes Playoffs) Drafted Contract Status
Teemu Kivihalme 24 D L 6.00/170 Karpat SM-liiga 42 14 Round 5, #140 Overall (Predators, 2013) NHL
Justin Brazeau 21 RW R 6.06/226 North Bay Battalion OHL 128 70 Undrafted AHL
Sergei Sapego 19 D L 6.00/177 Prince Albert Raiders WHL 57 13 Undrafted AHL
Riley Woods 21 LW L 5.10/180 Spokane Chiefs WHL 91 37 Undrafted AHL
Vladimir Alistrov 18 LW L 6.02/175 Edmonton Oil Kings WHL 45 13 Undrafted Free Agent
Joe Carroll 18 C L 6.02/200 Soo Greyhounds OHL 38 12 Undrafted Free Agent
James Hamblin 20 C L 5.09/176 Medicine Hat Tigers WHL 94 43 Undrafted Free Agent
Sean Larochelle 18 D R 5.10/164 Victoriaville Tigres QMJHL 32 9 Undrafted Free Agent
Josh Nelson 20 C L 5.11/182 London Knights OHL 40 21 Undrafted Free Agent
Marc-Antoine Pepin 18 D L 6.03/167 Sherbrooke Phoenix/Shawinigan Cataractes QMJHL 45 3 Undrafted Free Agent
Carter Robertson 19 D L 6.02/179 Owen Sound Attack OHL 30 2 Undrafted Free Agent
Xavier Simoneau 18 C L 5.06/169 Drummondville Voltigeurs QMJHL 77 24 Undrafted Free Agent
Nathan Staios 18 D L 5.08/168 Windsor Spitfires OHL 37 11 Undrafted Free Agent
Goalie
Name Age (The age the goalie will be for the majority of the 2019-2020 season) Hand Height/Weight Team (Last Season) League (Last Season) Games Played (Last Season) GAA (Last Season) SV% (Last Season) Drafted Contract Status
Maksim Zhukov 20 L 6.03/190 Barrie Colts (1) OHL 19 3.43 0.900 Round 4, #96 Overall (Golden Knights, 2017) AHL
N/A N/A N/A N/A Green Bay Gamblers (2) USHL 24 3.94 0.882 N/A N/A
Who stands out?
Source
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Who could replace Dave Hakstol? A glance at some potentially available NHL Coaches.

John Anderson
Kicking off our list is former Thrashers coach John Anderson. Like many coaches Anderson first saw success as a player in the NHL rather than a coach. He was a prolific goal scorer, racking up over 600 points with the Maple Leafs, Nordiques, and Whalers. Anderson spent a very long time with the Chicago Wolves in the IHL and AHL where he led the team to the playoffs in all but two seasons, and won three championships with the team.
In 2008 Anderson left Chicago for his only stint in the NHL with the Thrashers. After two disappointing seasons with the team he was canned.
Drew Bannister
Bannister took over as Head Coach of the OHL's Greyhounds after three years serving as Assistant Coach of the Owen Sound Attack. He took the league by storm, taking his teams to the playoffs in every year with the team, including a trip to the finals. Bannister is one of the best up and coming coaches right now, but likely needs some more time coaching at the AHL level before making the jump to the NHL.
Dan Bylsma
Dan Bylsma once seemed like the best coaches in the NHL. He took the Penguins over mid-season and took them to the Stanley Cup. Then became the fastest coach to reach 200 wins. It's not all sunshine and flowers for Bylsma though, he isn't always well liked by his players and struggles to adjust his lines during games.
Jack Capuano
Jack Capuano came up through the Islanders organization, spending 13 years with them in some capacity. He saw limited success with the team but ultimately proved to be an ineffective coach at the NHL level, despite showing flashes of greatness at lower level leagues.
Guy Carbonneau
After a long and successful playing career Carbonneau served as an Assistant Coach for the Montreal Canadiens and the Dallas Stars. After the 2006 season Carbonneau took the reins from Interim Coach and GM Bob Gainey where he flourished for the better part of three seasons. In 2008 he narrowly lost in voting to Bruce Boudreau for the Jack Adams Trophy. But in 2009 Carbonneau was fired, a move that had fans angry and confused. After leaving the Canadiens Carbonneau took a year off from coaching and returned in 2010 to coach the team he co-owned, the Chicoutimi Sagueneens. Carbonneau lasted 15 games before he decided to resign as coach. He hasn’t had a coaching job since.
Marc Crawford
Marc Crawford’s start to his coaching career was lacklustre. After two mediocre seasons with the Cornwall Royals he made the move to the AHL where he began his climb to coaching stardom. With St. John’s Crawford shined, taking the team to the finals in his first season with the team. In three seasons with St. John’s Crawford impressed the Nordiques so much that he was offered the position of Head Coach. Crawford won the Jack Adams Trophy in his first season and remained with the team in their move to Colorado where he led the team to their first ever Stanley Cup.
Crawford was never able to replicate his success in Colorado and after a good stint in Vancouver and unimpressive stints with Dallas and LA he moved away from the NHL for a fresh start. Crawford moved to Switzerland to coach the Zurich Lions. Under Crawford the Lions won a championship and had another finals berth, but after a disappointing performance in the 2016 playoffs Crawford was let go. He’s recently come back to the NHL as an Associate Coach with the Senators, hoping to impress enough to earn a head coaching job.
Randy Cunneyworth
Loyal to Rochester, Cunneyworth spent plenty of time with the organization both as a player and a coach. Cunneyworth has been an on and off member of the organization from 1980 to 2016.
He had one stint in the NHL as an Interim Head Coach for the Montreal Canadiens. This move was highly controversial and was the cause of protests due to the fact that Cunneyworth could not speak French. After an unimpressive season Cunneyworth returned to his position as Assistant Coach only to be fired a month later.
Kevin Dineen
Best known for his days as a player, Dineen is underrated as a coach. After some strong seasons with the Portland Pirates Dineen was given a shot as an NHL coach with the Florida Panthers. In his first season with the Panthers Dineen took the team to a surprising division title and playoff berth. Although he saw success in his first season he didn’t see very much in the two seasons after and he was fired.
Dineen has served as Assistant Coach of the Chicago Blackhawks since he was let go, and in 2014 he coached Canada’s Women’s Hockey Team to Gold at the Sochi Olympics.
Dominique Ducharme
Likely next in line for Montreal's Head Coaching job, Ducharme is well proven at the Junior level and is learning the ropes of coaching pro hockey with Montreal. At the helm of the Mooseheads, Ducharme's team had one of the most dominant seasons in recent memory, posting a 58-6-4 record en route to a championship.
Dallas Eakins
After spending seven years in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization the hype for Eakins was through the roof. He’d spent time as Leafs Assistant Coach and Marlies Head Coach and had done well in both roles. Many speculated that then Leafs Head Coach Randy Carlyle would be getting the can so the Leafs could hire Eakins, but that never came to fruition. Carlyle kept his job as bench boss for another season and Eakins joined the Oilers.
Eakins tenure with the Oilers was short and disappointing, but the jury is still out as to whether the blame falls on Eakins for that.
Scott Gordon
Gordon last head coaching job was as Capuano’s predecessor in New York. He served as Head Coach for the team for two of the team’s darker years where they failed to make the playoffs. On the bright side he did help land John Tavares.
Since leaving the Islanders organization Gordon served as Assistant Coach of the Maple Leafs before moving on to coach the Flyers’ AHL affiliates the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. He seems to have turned the team around as they looked fairly impressive under him.
Gordon is currently serving as Interim of the Flyers but if he performs well he could be given the job long-term a la Rod Brind'Amour in Carolina.
Wayne Gretzky
Who?
As a coach Gretzky had a disastrous four season campaign as coach of the Phoenix Coyotes. He hasn’t had a coaching job since.
Rikard Grönborg
Since the start of this season, analysts have been questioning whether Grönborg will be the first European coach to take a Head Coach's position in the NHL since 2001. It seems like he may try as he has decided to step down from his role behind Sweden's bench at the end of this season.
Grönborg has some interesting views on the NHL's coaching meta and wishes to try something new. He believes that the majority of teams run the same system and he wants to break that cycle. Grönborg says that he likes to carve out specific roles for players and assign specific tasks for them.
Benoit Groulx
Current Job: Head Coach with the Syracuse Crunch in the AHL
“Tic-tac-tao!”
Benoit Groulx is best known for his role in Team Canada’s 2015 World Junior Championships win where he was credited as a huge factor to the team’s success. Groulx served as a long time Head Coach of the Gatineau Olympiques where he led the team to three championships. Between his 12 seasons with Gatineau Groulx tried his hand in the AHL with the Rochester Americans where he did not see much success. In hopes to make his climb to the NHL Groulx has returned to the AHL as Head Coach of the Syracuse Crunch and took his team to the finals in his first season.
John Gruden
Gruden is probably most notorious for being the first coach of the Flint Firebirds, a coach who was fired for refusing to give the team owner's son extra ice time.
Since leaving the Firebirds, Gruden has made a name for himself, bringing home an OHL championship for the Hamilton Bulldogs and gold medal for Team USA at 2014 IIHF U18 World Championships as an Assistant Coach.
Glen Gulutzan
Gulutzan has experience behind the bench at multiple levels of professional hockey. He's been given two stints as Head Coach at the NHL level but has failed to impress in either one. He was snapped up fairly quickly as an Assistant Coach after his latest firing and it will be interesting to see if another team takes a flyer on him.
George Gwozdecky
George Gwozdecky is one of the most winningest coaches in NCAA Division I hockey history. With 592 total Div I wins he has amassed the 12th most wins of all time, and with 443 wins with the University of Denver he is the most successful coach in the program’s history.
Dave Hakstol
In a shocking turn of events, the Flyers could re-hire Hakstol due to popular demand... lol
Bob Hartley
Bob Hartley has won a major championship in every league he’s coached in, taking the Laval Titan, Hershey Bears, Zurich Lions, and the Colorado Avalanche all the way in his time with them. Most recently Hartley served as Head Coach of the Calgary Flames where he won a Jack Adams Trophy but was ultimately let go of after posting a negative record with the team through four seasons.
Hartley took over head coaching duties with Omsk for the 2018-19 KHL season and currently has the team at the top of their division.
Craig Hartsburg
An accomplished juniors coach that could never put things together at the professional level. Hartsburg always seemed to find himself coaching terrible teams and that isn't necessarily his fault.
Hartsburg has ties to the Flyers, having served as Assistant Coach for the team for six seasons across two different stints in the role.
He may not be interested in taking the role as he left his role as Associate Coach of the Blue Jackets because he struggled with being away from his family.
Mike Hastings
Mike Hastings is the probably the best coach that the NCAA has to offer. He's the winningest coach in USHL history, with three championships and six finals appearances under his belt, and since he started coaching college hockey his teams have always been dominant. In the NCAA Hastings' teams have won the WCHA Championship three times and Hastings has been named WCHA coach of the year twice, once winning the Spencer Penrose Award for best coach across the entirety of college hockey.
Don Hay
Having won the Memorial Cup and President’s Cup three times Don Hay has had a very successful career coaching in the WHL, but he’s found himself unable to stick in higher tiered leagues. Hay has had four stints with three NHL teams as both a Head Coach and as an Assistant Coach, none of which lasted more than a year. Hay also spent three seasons with the Utah Grizzlies in the AHL where he was never able to advance past the first round of the playoffs.
Peter Horachek
Always the bridesmaid and never the bride, Horachek has served as an Interim Head Coach but has never been given a shot in the NHL as anything more. This is likely in part because of his poor performance of both teams he served as Interim for.
Jim Hulton
Who would have thought back in 2000 that Jim Hulton would have been on a list like this 18 years later. Hulton's first experience as a Head Coach with the new expansion team, Mississauga IceDogs was a disaster. His squads had a record of 12-96-3 under him. Hulton resigned, realizing that the team was a lost cause. He fared better with his next team, taking Belleville to the top of the East Division in his first season with the team. Hulton did not let his first stint as a Head Coach define him and has proven to be one of the better coaches in the CHL.
Dale Hunter
Long time Co-Owner, President, and Head Coach of the London Knights Hunter has been a staple for the team and it’s hard to imagine him leaving the team for a coaching gig elsewhere. He did join the Capitals as Head Coach 2011 where his team underperformed and disappointed.
Mike Johnston
A good coach for a defensively minded team, unfortunately Johnston’s only NHL coaching gig was with the Pittsburgh Penguins who at the time were as far from defensively minded as a team could be. After his departure from the Penguins Johnston rejoined the Portland Winterhawks, a team he’s seen some success with as Head Coach in the past.
Sheldon Keefe
Sheldon Keefe is rising through the coaching ranks extremely quickly. After a championship win in the CJHL Keefe took the OHL by storm with the Greyhounds and transformed the team from a pushover to a powerhouse. In just his second season with the team Keefe and the Greyhounds posted their best season in franchise history. Keefe’s contributions to the team’s were recognized as he won both OHL and CHL Coach Of The Year.
In 2015 Keefe was hired as Head Coach of the Toronto Marlies. In his first season he took the team to the Conference Finals. He went on to coach the team to a Calder Cup last season.
Mike Keenan
One of the most winningest coaches of all time, without context you may wonder why he’s struggled recently to get back into the NHL. Mike Keenan does not play well with others. Whether he’s feuding with a Senior V.P., or a General Manager, or with superstars such as Trevor Linden, Brett Hull, or Gretzky, no matter where Keenan is coaching he’ll struggle to get along with his co-workers. Even if he has seemed to calm down as of late his reputation as ‘Iron Mike’ Keenan will continue to hang over his head.
Kris Knoblauch
One of the most talked about names in seasons past, Knoblauch did wonders for the Erie Otters. There's no doubt the teams he's coached were wildly talented, but some credit has to go Knoblauch who won both the WHL and OHL championships and capped off his OHL coaching career with four straight 50+ win seasons. Knoblauch is touted as being a teacher in the dressing room, maybe a good fit on a younger team.
Uwe Krupp
One of the greatest German coaches of all time, Uwe Krupp has coached Germany a total of ten times at the World Juniors, World Championships, and Olympic Games. In five seasons of coaching in DEL Krupp has led his teams to five finals berths, most recently losing to his former team Kolner Haie.
Nate Leaman
Nate Leaman has been the catalyst behind Providence College's success over the past few years, taking the team to their first Frozen Four appearance in 30 years. Leaman runs a system that focuses on fast skating and quick puck movement.
Doug MacLean
Best known for his role as a Hockey Analyst on Sportsnet, what many may not know is that MacLean had a five year NHL Coaching career. While most of his seasons as coach ended in disappointment, MacLean did lead the Florida Panthers to their first and only Stanley Cup Final appearance in his first season as coach.
Paul MacLean
After seeing plenty of success with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and Detroit Red Wings as an Assistant Coach from 2002 to 2011 MacLean was given his first gig as an NHL Head Coach with the Ottawa Senators. With the Senators MacLean was nominated for the Jack Adams Trophy in each of his first two seasons, winning it in his second season.
Jacques Martin
One of the most experienced coaches on this list, Jacques Martin is the 12th most winningest coach of all time, having amassed 613 total wins from 1986 to 2012. In 1999 Martin took home the Jack Adams Trophy after his Ottawa Senators topped the Northeast Division for the first time in franchise history.
Pierre McGuire
No I’m not joking. Every time an NHL coach is fired McGuire’s name seems to pop up brought up both seriously and non-seriously. McGuire had one brief NHL coaching stint with the Hartford Whalers. He was fired after only six months. Then Whalers captain Pat Verbeek called McGuire’s firing the best that could have happened to the Whalers.
Todd McLellan
One of the more highly touted coaching candidates on the list, McLellan stormed on to the scene with the Sharks in 2008 and never looked back. McLellan's Sharks were one of the most dominant teams of the 2010's but always fell short of the winning it all. He's coming off of a disappointing tenure with the Oilers but will surely bounce back.
Mark Messier
Messier has expressed interest in both General Manager and Head Coach roles and has garnered experience in both roles with Team Canada. It is unlikely that Messier will leave his position with the Oilers at this time.
Mike Milbury
Lmao, who doesn’t love Mike Milbury?
While Milbury extremely successful as Head Coach of the Boston Bruins the same cannot be said for his time with the Isles. With the Bruins he took the team to a Conference Final and a Cup Final, winning Executive of The Year and coaching an All-Star team along the way. His time with the Islanders on the other hand was a disaster to put it lightly. Milbury coached the team to some of their all time worst seasons all the while trading away key pieces such as Zdeno Chara, Bryan McCabe, Olli Jokinen, Eric Brewer, Wade Redden, and Roberto Luongo for scraps. When Milbury finally left the Islanders organization fans breathed a sigh of relief.
Kirk Muller
The heir apparent to Michel Therrien in Montreal (until Julien came along), Muller has spent plenty of time behind the bench as an NHL Assistant Coach with the Montreal Canadiens and St. Louis Blues. But his only job as an NHL Head Coach resulted in a poor stretch as Head Coach of the Carolina Hurricanes.
Andy Murray
Not the tennis player!
With 20 years of NHL coaching experience Murray is a seasoned veteran. He knows how to get the very best out of his players and has a strict no nonsense policy. Since leaving the NHL Murray has joined Western Michigan where he had a very strong start with the team, but team has since gone downhill.
Terry Murray
Terry Murray (no relation to Andy) a member of the Flyers 1976 Stanley Cup winning team returned to the organization after spending time coaching the Washington Capitals. In his time as Head Coach of the Flyers he took the team to a Conference Final and to a Stanley Cup Final in 1997. After his finals loss he moved back and forth between the Flyers organization and other positions around the AHL and NHL.
Todd Nelson
In one short stint in the NHL as Interim Head Coach of the Oilers Nelson began to turn around a struggling team and finished the season stronger than many people expected. Nelson helped struggling young players such as Yakupov, Hall, and Eberle turn develop and finish the season on a high note.
Claude Noel
Although he was able to find success in the AHL winning a Calder Cup in 2004, Noel has never been able to replicate that success in the NHL. Having the distinction of being the first Head Coach of the new Winnipeg Jets there were big expectations for Noel. Expectations that he did not live up to. In four NHL seasons with the Jets and Blue Jackets he never once was able to make the playoffs.
Ted Nolan
Ted Nolan is yet another familiar face for Islanders fans. After a very successful tenure in the CHL and between stints with the Buffalo Sabres, Nolan spent two seasons behind the bench for the Islanders. With New York Nolan took the Isles to the playoffs in his first season, but after missing the playoffs in his second season he was fired. Nolan was recently hired to coach Team Poland internationally.
Adam Oates
Adam Oates is a great coach for a team with a strong defensive corps and a struggling offense. Oates spent two seasons with the Capitals and fans soured on him very quickly due to his offense first coaching style. After leaving Washington he took on an unorthodox role as a co-coach of the New Jersey Devils where he ran the offense and Scott Stevens ran the defense.
Joel Quenneville
Joel Quenneville's resume speaks for itself. He is the number two most winningest coach in NHL history and boasts three Stanley Cups and a Jack Adams Trophy. Quenneville is probably the best coach on this list. He runs a system where forwards take a more defensive role in order to give his team's defensemen room to jump up on the rush and contribute offensively.
Tom Renney
Best known for his international coaching career Tom Renney has coached Team Canada at a total of ten World Championships, winning a total of three Gold Medals, three Silvers, and Two Bronzes. Renney has also seen success after taking over as President of Hockey Canada. Unfortunately that success never translated to the NHL.
Todd Richards
Todd Richards started his head coaching career behind the benches of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins where he led the team to a Calder Cup Final. After his finals appearance he joined the Minnesota Wild as Head Coach. After two disappointing seasons with the Wild he was fired. The season after his firing he was brought on as an Assistant Coach of the Blue Jackets. That same season he replaced Scott Arniel as Head Coach. After failing to make the playoffs in three of his four full seasons with the Jackets and starting his fifth season off 0-7-0 he was fired.
Luke Richardson
Luke Richardson left his job at Binghamton to pursue an NHL coaching job but as positions opened up he did not get a call. Instead of waiting around Richardson went to coach Team Canada at last year’s Spengler Cup, helping Canada capture gold. Richardson is often praised for his abilities as a teacher which may make him a good fit for one of the younger teams in the NHL.
Gary Roberts
Gary Roberts is a very interesting name to bring up in the Head Coach conversation because he doesn’t have any experience coaching. What he does have experience with is training and pushing players to their limit. It would be difficult to lure Roberts away from his current job as a personal trainer.
Larry Robinson
Not only was Larry Robinson one of the best D-men of all time but he was also a very successful Coach. After a somewhat rocky start coaching the Kings, Robinson hit his stride with the New Jersey Devils. In his first partial season with the Devils he helped the team to a Cup win, in his second season he helped the Devils ditch their reputation as an anti-offence team as his Devils lead the NHL in goals.
Patrick Roy
Hot head Patrick Roy showed that he was not a one trick pony when he took the QMJHL by storm as Head Coach of the Quebec Remparts in 2005, leading the team to a finals berth. Although he never won a championship in the league he did make the playoffs every single year and was a part of some deep playoff runs.
After eight years with the Remparts Roy joined his former team the Colorado Avalanche. In his first season with the Avs Roy won his division and clinched the Jack Adams Trophy. Unfortunately for Roy things only went downhill from there. They were eliminated in the first round and failed to qualify in the rest of his tenure with the team.
After the 2015-16 season Roy decided to step away from the Avalanche citing his lack of control over the roster as a main reason for his departure. He would later obtain a position of control, being hired as GM and Head Coach of the QMJHL's Quebec Remparts.
Lindy Ruff
Ruff is one of the most esteemed coaches on this list. After a fairly long NHL career, Ruff joined the Panthers as an Assistant. With the Panthers he took a trip to the Stanley Cup Final which opened a door for him to become a Head Coach. In 1997 he took a Head Coaching position with the Buffalo Sabres, a team he would take to the Stanley Cup Finals once and the Eastern Conference Finals three times.
After some continued mediocrity, the Sabres cut ties with Ruff. Ruff then took a Head Coaching job with the Stars but was let go of after posting mixed (but generally positive) results. He's currently sitting behind the Rangers bench, although he was passed up by David Quinn for the Head Coaching job.
Scott Sandelin
It's rare for teams to hire coaches straight out of NCAA but the Flyers are one of the few teams that have done just that in recent years. Sandelin has been a blessing for UMD, having taken them to the finals three times in his tenure with them, winning two championships.
Brad Shaw
Brad Shaw had his only chance as a Head Coach with the Islanders in 2006 when he took over for Steve Sterling as Interim Head Coach. The Isles’ performance under Shaw was mediocre and he did not return the next season.
Shaw served as Assistant and Associate Coach with the St. Louis Blues, serving under a total of four coaches, never getting the call himself. After the 2015-16 season Shaw left the Blues to pursue other opportunities.
Jason Smith
Being a former Flyers captain likely means that Smith is at the very least on the team's radar. Smith started his coaching career as Assistant for the Senators before taking on the Head Coach role for the Kelowna Rockets. Smith runs a system similar to how he played, preaching hard bodied defensive hockey.
John Stevens
A long time coach in waiting and a key part in two LA Kings Stanley Cup wins, John Stevens was finally given an extended look as Head Coach of the Kings last season. His first season behind the bench went well, but he was canned only 13 games into his second season. Stevens has grown since his time with the Flyers and will likely be back behind an NHL bench in some type of coaching role before next season.
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Ranking each MLS expansion candidate heading into the 2020s - Part 2

Continuing from my previous post, this time I focus on cities which would be in the league post-2022 (such as Phoenix), and take a look at even former bids, such as Rochester and the infamous Milwaukee bid.
Post-2022 Candidates
1. Phoenix
Phoenix looks like a shoe-in based on numbers; high Hispanic population, large number of young people and one of the fastest growing cities in the United States.
Phoenix doesn't have a great reputation as a sports city, but there are factors to consider. Phoenix is a heavy transplant city, and transplants are a group MLS does well with, since MLS is a young brand, and many people don't have local soccer teams. In addition, the other teams are... eh. The Diamondbacks have been mediocre in their history beside a World Series win, the Cardinals are literally the worst franchise NFL history, the Coyotes have been awful for so long and might be Mayflower'd to Houston, and the Suns have been great, but are now trying to pull a Precourt.
Phoenix Rising SC are the current soccer team in the market. Since Didier Drogba and others took over the team in 2017, average attendance has been more than 6,000 per game, at capacity level. In addition to star ownership, the team has partnered with Goldman Sachs to fund a new stadium in the Phoenix area. In 2018, Advantage Sports Union purchased a share in Phoenix Rising, further adding more clout to the Phoenix bid.
Phoenix won't be immediately added, but the heavy backing they’re receiving, in addition to their market, make them a strong candidate in the next round. Not only that, but soccer has ‘proven’ itself in Phoenix; a Mexico-USA game did well in 2014, and that success continues locally.
As mentioned before, the Phoenix sports market is crowded, so attention may be an issue. That’s not mentioning Liga MX, and your usual Euro-league watching fans. As teams like Atlanta, Portland, and Seattle have shown, it really does come down to the marketing and image they want to go for. We may see a blend of white hipster millennials mixing in with the older transplants and Latinos, all forming a strong culture and bond, and that’s likely what will work in the Phoenix market. Phoenix is also a university town, which presents a huge marketing opportunity for MLS.
2. Louisville
Louisville is another interesting proposition for MLS. Louisville is not a traditional MLS market; it’s in a state with a relatively unknown soccer scene, and where college basketball and horse racing are king. No other pro sports team has ever tested Louisville, but MLS might try.
Louisville is somewhere in between the Midwest and the South; I’m not qualified to classify Kentucky culturally, but that’s irrelevant so long as it can make a buck for MLS.
Regarding demographics, Louisville is interesting; Louisville has been experiencing a massive uptick in population and is one of the United States’ fastest growing cities; like other metropolitan areas in the region, it’s predominantly White and African-American. Presumably, part of the population growth is due to transplants moving to the region.
An MLS team in Louisville will have to work to capture the city’s image; there isn’t a large Hispanic population compared to other cities, and the Louisville sports scene seems rather conservative. However, Louisville is a college town, which means a lot of students and young people from across the country. It’s also worth making the team a part of the culture of the city itself; events such as the Kentucky Derby and the thriving indie culture scene.
More good news for Louisville is that the local team, Louisville City FC, does well in attendance numbers, with a solid following on social media for a non-MLS team. It helps that the team has been successful on the field and markets itself well. This would indicate that there is a demand for soccer in the city, and it hasn’t been poisoned by failed attempts.
The city of Louisville itself seems ready to embrace MLS. City officials have been in contact for ‘a while’ with MLS; however, the level of interest from MLS is a mystery. Louisville is not a large TV market; the Buchtertown stadium will only go up to 11,000, but according to city officials, it can be expanded to 20,000 if MLS rewards an expansion team. On paper, a Louisville bid looks decent, but until the next phase of expansion candidates, a lot remains to be seen.
3. Las Vegas
Why do I place Las Vegas third? Because Mark Davis and Jon Gruden. I’m not even saying that sarcastically, I’m being serious (obligatory screw you Mark Davis).
Las Vegas first appeared on the radar in 2014, and the initial bid was at Symphony Park. Otherwise, a Las Vegas MLS bid has been silent for a while; the last word from it was that, according to Garber in September 2018, there was ‘some talk about it’, which could mean anything. However, there’s good reason to believe it will come back.
The Raiders’ new stadium in Las Vegas will likely be accommodated to host soccer games. Look at the bigger picture; Mark Davis is heavily connected to Jerry Jones, who recently signed a deal with the FMF to host one Mexico friendly a year in AT&T Stadium (something I absolutely hate; obligatory screw you Jerry Jones). Mark Davis is going to try to make as much money from his stadium as possible, and Jon Gruden may have an ownership stake in the Raiders and will have some sway on those matters as well. With Haslam entering the ring, I wouldn’t be surprised if Davis and Gruden have privately discussed the idea of an MLS franchise, and hosting soccer in the stadium, given the trajectory of the league.
One major issue in this case is preparation; Arthur Blank carefully prepared Atlanta United for a long time; I have no idea what kind of preparations would take place with Davis, Gruden & Co (or have taken). Heck, David Beckham was initially considering putting his MLS bid with Davis but decided to go with the Miami group instead. That could be a bad omen, perhaps indicating the toxicity of Mark Davis. It should also be noted that Mark Davis isn’t a particularly popular (or rich) NFL owner, which makes me wonder how MLS would approach a bid from him. The good news is that the Las Vegas Lights team had a good season attendance wise in 2018 and has already built an image of oddities such as DJs and llamas and would likely continue those aspects if they were inducted into MLS.
Stadium size will also be an issue in using the Raiders stadium for an MLS team; will Las Vegas pack house like Atlanta or Seattle? MLS already hates the idea of using NFL stadiums that won’t fill, unless Davis & Co. can convince Garber that games will be consistently filled. How involved would ownership be anyway? Will we see Jon Gruden jumping around while watching his MLS team play? Frankly, that’s anyone’s guess.
It helps that the Las Vegas Lights had a successful debut season, showing that Las Vegas has a market for soccer. In addition, the Golden Knights had a successful debut season in 2017, further solidifying the potential in its sports market (though NHL arenas are small). I place Las Vegas here because it’s a complete unknown in terms of ownership, stadium, and whether the team will start from scratch, or partner with the existing Lights team. However, as I said before, a lot can change in a few months or a year. Therefore, Las Vegas is the absolute wild card.
4. Indianapolis
Indianapolis attempted to move their NASL franchise to MLS in 2017, but it ultimately died down due to the bad relationship between NASL and MLS, and simply because Indianapolis didn't have enough to be considered at the time.
The bid has been mostly silent since, other than Indy Eleven being focused on getting into MLS eventually. It helps that attendance for the team is quite solid, averaging more than 10,000 people per game at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Demographically speaking, Indianapolis is… interesting. Indianapolis has consistently grown in terms of population, only reporting a population decline in the 1980 U.S. Census. Indianapolis isn’t a very diverse city, being predominantly White/African-American. Median age is solid at 33.7 years old, with a sizable LGBT community and the city is growing, attracting multiple companies to set up shop there. Indianapolis is ranked 25th in terms of TV market size, par with Sacramento or St. Louis. Overall, while the state of Indiana itself tends to be an ‘old white male’ state which is heavily conservative, Indianapolis bucks those trends and is a solid market for soccer. Competition includes the Pacers (basketball is followed religiously in Indiana) and the Colts, alongside college sports.
In terms of stadium, Indianapolis has proposed a soccer-specific stadium in Downtown Indianapolis; the renderings look gorgeous, and funding details are vague, though it appears to mainly focus on private funding with a public partnership. Again, if Indianapolis is going to make a serious push for a spot in MLS, they’re going to need concrete details and strong ownership. Lucas Oil Stadium is probably not an option.
Indianapolis isn’t the sexiest pick, but it has upside. It also benefits that it’s not in the Southeast, where expansion may be at a halt; the question is how strong the push there will be. We can only wait.
5. Tampa Bay
Here’s a more traditional market that MLS has considered coming back to, and previously failed in: Tampa.
Tampa has long been a stronghold for American soccer; the Tampa Bay Rowdies are a popular local brand and were one of the more successful teams of the old NASL. MLS originally had a team in Tampa, and completely screwed it up by calling them the Tampa Bay… Mutiny? They’re wearing teal blue and black, and have a weird Batman alien as their logo? Oh lord, this can only end so well…
Predictably, the team busted because the fans hated the branding and wanted the actual Rowdies (thanks Nike). 10 years after the Mutiny went bust, Tampa got their Rowdies back. You can’t fault the Tampa market for the team failing, and ultimately, MLS has never really looked back.
What Tampa has going is popularity of the local team; the Rowdies brand is well-known in Tampa, and the Rowdies averaged almost 6,000 people in 2018; not eye-dropping numbers, but solid mind you.
What about ownership? Well, the Rowdies were recently purchased by the Tampa Bay Rays, a team not exactly known for their spending habits. Nonetheless, it helps, but the Tampa MLS bid will likely need more financial backing. A lot changes in the span of a few months, and the Rays’ purchase of the Rowdies only occurred in October; it’s possible the Tampa MLS bid finds another investor.
Demographically speaking, Tampa is solid; it’s a growing city with a relatively diverse population and a median age of less than 35 years old. One aspect MLS should consider is location; while the Rowdies do well, they are far from an ideal location in St. Petersburg. The Rays have struggled with attendance in St. Petersburg since they first began playing, and the Tampa bid seems intent on re-furbishing their current stadium. From an MLS perspective, putting a stadium in St. Petersburg could backfire, akin to other suburban stadiums, and the Tampa bid may want to consider a stadium plan in the center of the city instead, closer to Tampa's attractions, restaurants and night life.
The Glazer family are an interesting party in this; they own both the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Manchester United. With MLS already pulling Jimmy Haslam in and having Arthur Blank (who is a great representative for MLS), the interest in the league from NFL owners will likely continue. The Glazer family may see a Tampa MLS franchise as a good investment, and their name would bring a lot of clout to this bid.
Finally, it should be noted that Orlando City exists, and Miami will be entering the scene soon. Only the NFL has 3 teams in the Florida marketplace, though MLS might go the same route.
6. The Carolinas
Charlotte has had an interesting journey. The heart of the Research Triangle itself, it is a growing city which has gotten attention over time as an MLS candidate. We’ll also cover Raleigh as well and refer to this section as ‘The Carolinas’.
First, Charlotte. Speedway Motorsports CEO Marcus Smith first proposed a stadium and team in 2017; the bid died down when the Charlotte city council could not get their shit together by October. However, the Charlotte bid has received backing from David Tepper who… want to use the Bank of America Stadium to host soccer games. Not the strongest bid, though Garber was reportedly ‘intrigued’. Despite that, MLS will likely pass on Charlotte if this is going to be their strongest proposal, barring other circumstances, especially since Garber doesn’t envision more expansion in the Southeast (putting a dent to Charlotte, Raleigh, and Tampa). That doesn’t kill the bid; it just means it’s not strong enough. However, David Tepper does appear he would be engaged; he's doing quite a lot of work to develop the Panthers brand and I could see him being similar to Arthur Blank in terms of promoting his team. If Tepper approaches Garber with the same ambition as Blank did, Charlotte might be considered, especially in an opening market like the South.
Raleigh has a somewhat stronger bid, offering a soccer-specific stadium as well as an already committed owner in Steve Malik, who owns both North Carolina FC and the North Carolina Courage. However, I’m unsure about other potential owners; from what it seems, the bid is probably lacking financial clout.
For what it’s worth, it helps that both Charlotte and Raleigh have existing and successful local soccer teams, and soccer in the region itself is popular, so support for an MLS franchise would be immediate. Demographically, both cities are similar; urbanized Southern metro areas with a somewhat diverse and young population who would be a good market for MLS. However, MLS may halt Southeast expansion, though I could see one more Southeast team being added before 2030.
Plus, think about it. Wouldn't Southern MLS derbies be awesome? Mix the college football atmospheres with elements from the Premier League, Argentina, and Mexico and it would be amazing.
7. San Antonio
I might as well add San Antonio to moribund, but I'll leave it last because it still might happen one way or another.
Prior to October 2017, San Antonio was one of the leading candidates for an MLS team. San Antonio had it all - a young and diverse but heavily Hispanic population, long term interest dating back to 2005, and a concrete stadium plan (a soccer stadium that could be expanded to accommodate MLS games) and backing from the San Antonio Spurs. Things looked great.
Then Precourt happened. There was ugly threatened legal action from San Antonio to MLS which has since been dropped but may come back. It all went to shit.
However, San Antonio is still, barely alive, with one of two scenarios.
One, Precourt's ambitions in Austin can always go down the shitter. Unlikely, but it could happen. He could go down to San Antonio and continue the bid there.
More likely though, MLS could double down on Texas, and put a fourth franchise down there. Texas is a large state with a high population, and could conceivably support four teams, and San Antonio is large enough to do so.
Even with those scenarios, MLS has pissed away all its good will with San Antonio. We have a reverse Milwaukee situation here. MLS probably realizes San Antonio is a lost cause, which is sad given the way it's played out.
Moribund/Dead/Hypothetical Bids
A section for MLS bids which are either moribund (as in, no longer active and likely won’t be), completely dead, or have never existed; this doesn’t mean that a city on this list won’t necessarily get a team (circumstances change), but it’s at best highly unlikely. More than likely, another league (like USL) will expand in these markets instead.
1. Albuquerque
The Albuquerque Sol are New Mexico’s professional soccer team, otherwise the demand for soccer is relatively little in the city, Hispanic population notwithstanding. Albuquerque is a middling TV market, but otherwise no other sports league has considered Albuquerque, with little history in supporting pro teams, and their claim to sporting fame is moving the Springfield Isotopes to their city; on the plus, Albuquerque has exploded in population lately, but its sandwiched between Phoenix, Las Vegas, and Texas, all of which will get priority before Albuquerque.
The last update from a potential Albuquerque bid was from March 2017, where Albuquerque mayor Richard Berry met with Don Garber. Perhaps Richard Berry didn’t get the memo that MLS isn’t looking into smaller-sized cities as it did in the past. It’s a city MLS might have considered in the 2000s, but that time is long gone.
2. Baltimore
Baltimore is likely redundant, given that Baltimore only has two pro sports teams in the Orioles and the Ravens, and their most notable claim to soccer fame was a liquor store team making a U.S. Open Cup run. DC United controls territorial rights to Baltimore and they won’t give it up. In addition, DC United is on the upswing with their new stadium and is on an upward trajectory; a better idea would be to market DC United in the Baltimore area, and the rest of Maryland.
3. Canada
Ottawa attempted to enter MLS in 2009 but was ultimately passed over in favor of Portland and Vancouver instead. Other Canadian cities are likely to be served either by USL or the upcoming Canadian Premier League, and MLS seems content on three Canadian teams, not to mention the value of the Canadian dollar versus the American dollar, and that major Canadian metro areas are much smaller than American ones.
4. Chicago
Chicago could be large enough to support two MLS teams, but MLS likely won’t consider another it, though the USL has considered putting a team in Chicago. Unfortunately, the Fire haven’t done a good job of marketing themselves in Chicago; the Schweinsteiger signing gave a lot of buzz but the deal in Bridgeview has stymied the team’s progress, as the Fire play far from the fans and the stadium doesn’t bring much revenue. Shame, it would be nice to see Chicago have a hugely popular MLS team. MLS seems to not do great in very large American markets (New York, Boston, and Chicago), it’s something that needs to be considered moving ahead especially looking at TV numbers.
5. Cleveland
Ah, Cleveland. Imagine an MLS team in Cleveland and the horrible records they would be posting because… Cleveland sports, yo.
The idea of bringing MLS to Cleveland started in 2004 when businessman Bert Wolstein attempted to get public funding for a Cleveland team; he ran into delays with the project, and unfortunately, Wolstein passed away in 2004, leaving the bid in limbo (at this time, Cleveland was passed over in favor of Real Salt Lake and, you guessed it, Chivas USA). His successor sports group attempted again in 2006, this time settling on Macedonia (not the country), a suburb outside of Cleveland, but the bid was skullfucked by public resistance over financing and environmental issues, and the area overall was hit hard by the 2008 recession. This effectively killed any potential Cleveland MLS team.
Don Garber stated in 2014 that talks for a Cleveland MLS team were inactive. With the purchase of Columbus Crew by Jimmy Haslam, it can be assumed that Cleveland’s territorial rights will belong to Columbus Crew, essentially putting the Cleveland-Akron market as Crew territory. Instead of an expansion franchise, MLS will likely focus on promoting the Crew as Cleveland’s team, and marketing Hell is Real in the Cleveland-Akron area.
6. Des Moines
It’s too small. The most I could find for this hypothetical bid was Scott Siepker (a local celebrity apparently) who thinks MLS2DesMoines might be a good idea. That ship has long sailed away, Scott. Not to mention Des Moines has a USL team in the Menace, which is pretty much the most Des Moines can aspire in terms of a soccer team.
7. Los Angeles/Southern California
The last thing we need is another team in or near Los Angeles. Los Angeles seems to be the go-to place for every league and sporting event but there’s one problem: Los Angeles is saturated with sports teams, and millions of other things to do. The Angels, Chargers, Clippers, Dodgers, Ducks, Galaxy, Kings, LAFC, Lakers, and Rams all play in the Los Angeles/Orange area, and most of those teams have very well-established histories. I find it ridiculous that Barcelona wants to create the NWSL version of Chivas USA here with the Barcelona branding; they’ll go extinct like the dinosaurs and Los Angeles will reject them harder than a D list actress.
Limit the California expansion to Sacramento and San Diego and get the LA Galaxy and San Jose Earthquakes to get their shit together; it’s a market MLS needs but is making some serious errors in.
8. Mexico
Here’s a crackpot idea: an MLS-Liga MX merger. Liga MX president Enrique Bonilla brought up the idea last October, alluding to it and stating that it could happen post 2026 World Cup. But, is it possible?
First, this would be a mega-league. Whoa. This could be a more than 50 team league by the time 2026 rolls around; this hypothetical super-league would have over-saturation issues and too many games over demand. What would they do, limit the number of teams? That will not sit well in any North American country, especially given how bought in owners are in their respective leagues. That’s not accounting for fan resistance. Smaller fish in this hypothetical league could get sent to a ‘second division’, creating a mass controversy for ages, even if this model had promotion/relegation; a solution would be splitting into ‘leagues’ or ‘conferences’ like MLB and the NFL, and having a similar playoff/championship format, but then the question of interleague play would come in, not to mention how Libertadores and CCL would factor in (don’t get me started with the Caribbean/Central American associations). From a scheduling and formatting perspective, this looks like a huge clusterfuck unless it’s very carefully designed.
This isn’t accounting for other obvious issues such as traveling across borders, the constantly fluctuating values of the Mexican peso and Canadian dollar compared to the American dollar, politics, the traveling itself (a team traveling all the way from Montreal to face a team in Veracruz, and then traveling elsewhere or back, could be grueling, and that’s just one example), broadcasting rights/TV contracts, stadium accommodations needed for this Pan-North American league, security issues across the board, promotion/relegation (oh god) and where Caribbean and Central American leagues would stand on this issue. I would assume this will all be carefully planned over the span of a decade, and by the time 2026 comes an integrated North American Super League may make more sense. But for now, this just seems like a crazy idea, more so than the proposed European Super League that’s gaining traction.
9. Milwaukee
Milwaukee is a relatively large city, with a good sports history. There’s some soccer history here too; the Milwaukee Wave have been relatively successful, so what gives? It’s not the lack of interest that has kept MLS out of Milwaukee; rather, it’s because of the muddied waters, or more specifically, a ploy by the old guard to keep the league out of the city.
In 2002, Tulsa World reported that an MLS team in Milwaukee was either scrapped or on hold (Tulsa itself at this point was in the running), and as it turns out, they were scrapped (the article itself is worth a read and paints a picture of the league in 2002 after the World Cup; even Atlanta, Houston, Minneapolis, New York, and Philadelphia are mentioned, not to mention current candidates in the Carolinas, San Diego, and St. Louis). Here’s where things get spicy: Tim Krause (who sadly passed away in 2011) was adamant for an MLS team in the center of Milwaukee in 2002, but his proposal was killed by the authority operating Bradley Center and Miller Park.
The bid dates to 2001; according to Sports Business Daily, the plan would have included a privately-funded stadium in Downtown Milwaukee; the stadium would have fit 20,000 and could be renovated in the future to hold 26,000 people. The investors were described as having ‘understood the soccer world’ and came from as far as Norway. The stadium would have withstood the cold climate of Milwaukee and would have been close to businesses and attractions in the city. This was an incredibly ambitious bid, especially during a time when MLS was considering ceasing operations. Milwaukee could have been Seattle before Seattle, and the trajectory of the league might have been expedited.
This is where the conspiracy starts; apparently both the Brewers and Bucks conspired to torpedo this bid, and Bud Selig (both owner of the Brewers and commissioner of MLB) did anything he could to prevent a soccer team in Milwaukee, and he was successful. The Bradley Center Board of Directors unanimously killed the proposal, and Krause was furious. For more context, the Brewers hadn’t made the playoffs since 1982, and the Bucks were only re-gaining popularity at that time after struggling in the 1990s.
Yes, even back then, the old guard of sports feared soccer, during a time when MLS and American soccer were punchlines. It makes sense too: why let a new kid on the block when they pose a threat to your languishing business? Ultimately, it was not to be, and perhaps Garber hasn’t looked back because of beef with the Bucks and Brewers. What’s more depressing is that Krause died in 2011; he saw potential for American domestic soccer (and he was right), but it’s depressing to think he got blackballed by the Brewers and Bucks and won’t be remembered like Arthur Blank or Paul Allen. Rest easy, Tim, your vision was fulfilled, but sadly not in Milwaukee.
The last update that I could find from this particular bid was in 2014; a supporter’s group, the Milwaukee Barons, alongside a larger group called the Milwaukee Soccer Development Group, were trying to build local awareness for an MLS team (even at this point, at best it would have been a decade to get a team); unfortunately it seems momentum has died down (probably because there was a lack of local corporate support, and Garber looking at Milwaukee with a cynical eye).
While Milwaukee proper is a relatively large area, the metro area isn’t particularly large. The TV market here would likely include the entire state of Wisconsin, which means areas like Madison, Green Bay, etc. being included, so it’s not a huge market, but not terrible either. However, regardless of demographics and numbers, Milwaukee has burned its bridge with MLS, meaning we likely won’t see an MLS team in Milwaukee, and you can thank Bud Selig for that. For all the hate the NFL gets from soccer fans, they’ve done quite a lot to help MLS grow, whereas MLB and the NBA attempted to hinder it in the past.
10. New Orleans
New Orleans was one of the first cities in the world where pro soccer was played, especially by ethnic communities. However, New Orleans has never really been considered for an MLS bid, and the highest-level soccer team being the New Orleans Jesters. As far as I could find, there has never been any public interest from New Orleans in relation to an MLS team.
New Orleans is not a particularly large market; the metropolitan area is quite small, and the TV audience share isn’t particularly great. A New Orleans team would also have to gain attention from not just New Orleans but also the entire state of Louisiana and extending into Mississippi.
I suppose New Orleans' sports attention is taken away mostly from football on both the college and professional level, and the surrounding demographics aren’t great for soccer, so it’s understandable why MLS hasn’t considered New Orleans. Think about it: are all those rednecks from the boondocks who probably still think of soccer as being part of some socialist plot (which is incredibly ironic when you compare the structure of the NFL compared to the Premier League or La Liga) are suddenly going to jump on the MLS bandwagon? Sure, some will, but not all. Point being, New Orleans would be a difficult market to work with.
11. New York City
Ah, if only the Cosmos were in MLS, but it's not to be.
Garber commented in 2010-11(?) that New York could conceivably support more than two soccer teams, pointing out cities like London that have multiple teams across levels, but it seems Garber has since changed his mind (especially when other markets are hard to pass up). New York expansion doesn’t make sense anyway; like Los Angeles, the New York/New Jersey area is saturated with sports teams (not counting MLS; Devils, Giants, Islanders, Jets, Knicks, Mets, Nets, Rangers, and Yankees).
12. Oklahoma City
Technically speaking, this one is still alive, but I’m listing this one as moribund, primarily due to the latest developments.
In July 2017, OKC Energy FC owner Bob Funk Jr. stated he was committed to MLS, despite setbacks in finding a stadium. However, the latest update from July 2018 is a max 10,000 capacity crowd; I assume this would be expandable, but the article doesn’t mention anything about MLS, which means that the ambition has died down, at least for now.
Of all the cities on here, I would put Oklahoma City as the likeliest to be revived, but I wouldn’t put much on that. Demographics are solid; predominantly white with a sizable Latino community, and consistent growth in the decades since, with a relatively solid median age. However, the metro size of Oklahoma City, and the TV market size aren’t great. However, the Oklahoma City Thunder have been successful (sorry Seattle), so MLS could work here.
OKC Energy FC had a down season in 2018 and attendance wasn’t great, so while there is a market, attendance may not be consistent. In addition, I haven’t heard of much financial backing for this bid, so I could see MLS seeing Oklahoma City as moribund like with Cleveland and Milwaukee, but again, there is some fluidity here.
13. Omaha
Omaha’s most famous sports franchise is… a Legends Football League team?
Jokes aside, Omaha is a fun market to look at; steady population numbers, but overall a small market that is usually covered by Kansas City. Nebraska is a stereotype ‘aging old white’ state that isn’t exactly a market for soccer. In addition, attempts to bring soccer to the city have already come up short, and the sporting scene is relatively conservative. Both USL and NISL are attempting to bring a team here, but the demand here is completely unknown. This is a hard pass.
14. Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh has a good market size, especially in terms of the metro area, so market size isn’t the issue here for Pittsburgh. The problem here is interest.
The Pittsburgh Riverhounds are the local pro soccer team, but attendance there in 2018 was an average of 2,401 for a stadium that fits 5,000. In context, it’s worse, as the team was 3rd in the USL eastern conference and made the playoffs.
It’s plain and simple – there’s not a strong soccer culture in Pittsburgh. The area is obsessed with football, and especially the Steelers. Whatever other attention for sport exists is taken by the Penguins, Pirates, and college sports (damn it, I would love to see Pittsburgh embrace soccer, imagine a cross between a Steelers game and a Premier League game).
Even with the changing demographics of the city, selling soccer there is going to be difficult compared to other expansion candidates. The city of Pittsburgh has not engaged MLS publicly either as far as I could find, so this is a pass.
15. RochesteBuffalo
Funny how time passes and brings change. Rochester was considered a serious MLS candidate back in the mid-2000s, and it’s fun to read about the effort in hindsight. In the 2000s, a team in Rochester might have been considered, with the MLS ethos focusing on smaller cities and suburbs.
The area was hit hard by the 2008 recession and the local team, the Rochester Rhinos, have been mismanaged and on hiatus. to mention nearby Buffalo had an NWSL move to North Carolina. In addition, northern New York is a paltry market compared to other expansion candidates. In 2005, MLS really didn’t have many other choices; in 2019, MLS has a greater cream of the crop.
16. San Francisco Bay Area
The failure of the San Francisco Deltas was likely part of a larger move in hopes of tapping into the SF Bay Area market here the Earthquakes haven’t done a great job of marketing themselves. The Deltas were a noble idea but unfortunately fell victim to a league crisis and the saturated Bay Area sports market.
The SF Bay Area could support a second team, but the market here is saturated, and Earthquakes hold territorial rights anyway. MLS needs to get their shit together here; it’s a large market with favorable demographics and the local team isn’t doing so hot, much like Boston or Chicago.
17. Tulsa
Ah, where the league once was, where MLS was courting Tulsa, Oklahoma, of all cities, for an MLS expansion team.
That died down, as Tulsa, simply put, is too small to support a team in any major league but given the old MLS idea of ‘small cities with no teams will support soccer’, it was attractive at some point. Tulsa nowadays enjoys MLS affiliation via the Roughnecks and are trying to get a stadium built. Otherwise, a nice trip down memory lane.
Epilogue
Whew, and that concludes potential MLS expansion. The situation is much different than it was 10, or even 5 years ago. Markets that weren't considered an option are now opening up, and going up to 28-32 teams is a very real possibility. Of course, expansion isn't the end all be all; for every new Atlanta-like success we still have a franchise like New England or Dallas which is stuck in MLS 1.0 thinking and a crap stadium situation.
The league not only needs to choose its candidates wisely, but grow the league as a whole. More teams means more markets, and a larger audience share. One can lament the visibility of MLS compared to the other four major leagues, but not having teams in major markets such as Detroit, Miami, and San Diego will do that. Additionally, viewers in other key markets like Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, New York, and San Francisco simply aren't engaged enough, and those are all huge markets.
It's an exciting time for the league, and the 2020s will really give an indication of the league's trajectory. Let the 2020s be the decade where MLS is catapulted as a top league in the world.
submitted by Return_Of_BG_97 to MLS [link] [comments]

Is your team's coach on the hotseat? Who could feasibly replace him? A glance at potentially available Head Coaches.

John Anderson
Kicking off our list is former Thrashers coach John Anderson. Like many coaches Anderson first saw success as a player in the NHL rather than a coach. He was a prolific goal scorer, racking up over 600 points with the Maple Leafs, Nordiques, and Whalers. Anderson spent a very long time with the Chicago Wolves in the IHL and AHL where he led the team to the playoffs in all but two seasons, and won three championships with the team.
In 2008 Anderson left Chicago for his only stint in the NHL with the Atlanta Thrashers. After two disappointing seasons with the team he was canned.
Craig Berube
Long time member of the Flyers organization, Berube started his career as an NHL enforcer. After an 18 year pro playing career Berube made the transition from Philadelphia Phantoms player to Philadelphia Phantoms Assistant Coach. Berube rose through the ranks, going from Assistant Coach to Interim Head Coach to Head Coach of the Phantoms to Assistant Coach of the Flyers, and finally to Head Coach of the Flyers. Unfortunately for Berube he lasted only two seasons before players and fans soured on him.
Dan Bylsma
Dan Bylsma once seemed like the best coaches in the NHL. He took the Penguins over mid-season and took them to the Stanley Cup. Then became the fastest coach to reach 200 wins. It's not all sunshine and flowers for Bylsma though, he isn't always well liked by his players and struggles to adjust his lines during games.
Dave Cameron
No, this is not the former British Prime Minister.
Dave Cameron moved around quite a bit, bouncing back and forth between the AHL and OHL always posting impressive numbers. After 16 years of coaching Cameron finally got his first NHL as Assistant Coach for the Ottawa Senators. Cameron impressed Sens management and once Paul MacLean was let go, he got his shot as Head Coach. Cameron and the Senators were a Cinderella Story in his first season and they surprised by making the playoffs. After a disappointing sophomore campaign Cameron was fired.
Jack Capuano
Jack Capuano came up through the Islanders organization, spending 13 years with them in some capacity. He saw limited success with the team but ultimately proved to be an ineffective coach at the NHL level, despite showing flashes of greatness at lower level leagues.
Guy Carbonneau
After a long and successful playing career Carbonneau served as an Assistant Coach for the Montreal Canadiens and the Dallas Stars. After the 2006 season Carbonneau took the reins from Interim Head Coach and GM Bob Gainey where he flourished for the better part of three seasons. In 2008 he narrowly lost in voting to Bruce Boudreau for the Jack Adams Trophy. But in 2009 Carbonneau was fired, a move that had fans angry and confused. After leaving the Canadiens Carbonneau took a year off from coaching and returned in 2010 to coach the team he co-owned, the Chicoutimi Sagueneens. Carbonneau lasted 15 games before he decided to resign as coach. He hasn’t had a coaching job since.
Marc Crawford
Marc Crawford’s start to his coaching career was lacklustre. After two mediocre seasons with the Cornwall Royals he made the move to the AHL where he began his climb to coaching stardom. With St. John’s Crawford shined, taking the team to the finals in his first season with the team. In three seasons with St. John’s Crawford impressed the Nordiques so much that he was offered the position of Head Coach. Crawford won the Jack Adams Trophy in his first season and remained with the team in their move to Colorado where he led the team to their first ever Stanley Cup.
Crawford was never able to replicate his success in Colorado and after a good stint in Vancouver and unimpressive stints with Dallas and Los Angeles he moved away from the NHL for a fresh start. Crawford moved to Switzerland to coach the Zurich Lions. Under Crawford the Lions won a championship and had another finals berth, but after a disappointing performance in the 2016 playoffs Crawford was let go. He’s recently come back to the NHL as an Associate Coach with the Senators, hoping to impress enough to earn a head coaching job.
Randy Cunneyworth
Loyal to the Rochester Americans, Cunneyworth spent plenty of time with the organization both as a player and a coach. Cunneyworth has been an on and off member of the organization from 1980 to 2016.
Cunneyworth had one stint in the NHL as an Interim Head Coach for the Montreal Canadiens. This move was highly controversial and was the cause of protests due to the fact that Cunneyworth could not speak French. After an unimpressive season Cunneyworth returned to his position as Assistant Coach only to be fired a month later.
Willie Desjardins
Desjardins is a junior hockey coaching legend. After joining the Medicine Hat Tigers in 2002, Desjardins took junior hockey by storm. He lead the team to a Memorial Cup berth and then two WHL Championships, as well as winning the CHL coach of the year. He followed this up by serving as a bench boss on Canada's 2009 gold medal winning World Juniors team. He impressed enough to get a look by the Dallas Stars, and after a few years in the organization, along with a Calder Cup, he moved on to his first NHL head coaching gig with the Canucks.
Desjardins surprised in his first year and took his team to the playoffs, but in his two seasons after that, the Canucks were a bottom team in the league. Expect Willie to get another shot at some point.
Kevin Dineen
Best known for his days as a player, Dineen is severely underrated as a coach. After some strong seasons with the Portland Pirates Dineen was given a shot as an NHL coach with the Florida Panthers. In his first season with the Panthers Dineen took the team to a surprising division title and playoff berth. Although he saw success in his first season he didn’t see very much in the two seasons after and he was fired.
Dineen has served as Assistant Coach of the Chicago Blackhawks since he was let go, and in 2014 he coached Canada’s Women’s Hockey Team to Gold at the Sochi Olympics.
Dallas Eakins
After spending seven years in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization the hype for Eakins was through the roof. He’d spent time as Leafs Assistant Coach and Marlies Head Coach and had done well in both roles. Many speculated that then Leafs Head Coach Randy Carlyle would be getting the can so the Leafs could hire Eakins, but that never came to fruition. Carlyle kept his job as bench boss for another season and Eakins joined the Oilers.
Eakins tenure with the Oilers was short and disappointing, but the jury is still out as to whether the blame falls on Eakins for that.
Scott Gordon
Another coach with ties to the Flyers organization. Gordon was Capuano’s predecessor in New York. He served as Head Coach for the team for two of the team’s darker years where they failed to make the playoffs. On the bright side he did help land John Tavares. Since leaving the Islanders organization Gordon served as Assistant Coach of the Maple Leafs before moving on to coach the Flyers’ AHL affiliates the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. He seems to have turned the team around as they've looked fairly impressive under him.
Wayne Gretzky
Who?
As a coach Gretzky had a disastrous four season campaign as coach of the Phoenix Coyotes. He hasn’t had a coaching job since.
Benoit Groulx
Current Job: Head Coach with the Syracuse Crunch in the AHL
“Tic-tac-tao!”
Benoit Groulx is best known for his role in Team Canada’s 2015 World Junior Championships win where he was credited as a huge factor to the team’s success. Groulx served as a long time Head Coach of the Gatineau Olympiques where he led the team to three championships. Between his 12 seasons with the Olympiques Groulx tried his hand in the AHL with the Rochester Americans where he did not see much success. In hopes to make his climb to the NHL Groulx has returned to the AHL as Head Coach of the Syracuse Crunch and took his team to the finals in his first season.
George Gwozdecky
George Gwozdecky is one of the most winningest coaches in NCAA Division I hockey history. With 592 total Div I wins he has amassed the 12th most wins of all time, and with 443 wins with the University of Denver he is the most successful coach in the program’s history.
Bob Hartley
Bob Hartley has won a major championship in every league he’s coached in, taking the Laval Titan, Hershey Bears, Zurich Lions, and the Colorado Avalanche all the way in his time with them. Most recently Hartley served as Head Coach of the Calgary Flames where he won a Jack Adams Trophy but was ultimately let go of after posting a negative record with the team through four seasons.
Don Hay
Having won the Memorial Cup and President’s Cup three times Don Hay has had a very successful career coaching in the WHL, but he’s found himself unable to stick in higher tiered leagues. Hay has had four stints with three NHL teams as both a Head Coach and as an Assistant Coach, none of which lasted more than a year. Hay also spent three seasons with the Utah Grizzlies in the AHL where he was never able to advance past the first round of the playoffs.
Peter Horachek
Always the bridesmaid and never the bride, Horachek has served as an Interim Head Coach but has never been given a shot in the NHL as anything more. This is likely in part because of his poor performance of both teams he served as Interim for.
Dale Hunter
Long time Co-Owner, President, and Head Coach of the London Knights Hunter has been a staple for the team and it’s hard to imagine him leaving the team for a coaching gig elsewhere. He did join the Capitals as Head Coach 2011 where his team underperformed and disappointed.
Mike Johnston
A good coach for a defensively minded team, unfortunately Johnston’s only NHL coaching gig was with the Pittsburgh Penguins who at the time were as far from defensively minded as a team could be. After his departure from the Penguins Johnston rejoined the Portland Winterhawks, a team he’s seen some success with as Head Coach in the past.
Sheldon Keefe
Sheldon Keefe is rising through the coaching ranks extremely quickly. After a championship win in the CJHL Keefe took the OHL by storm with the Greyhounds and transformed the team from a pushover to a powerhouse. In just his second season with the team Keefe and the Greyhounds posted their best season in franchise history. Keefe’s contributions to the team’s were recognized as he won both OHL and CHL Coach Of The Year. In 2015 Keefe was hired as Head Coach of the Toronto Marlies. In his first season he took the team to the Conference Finals.
Mike Keenan
One of the most winningest coaches of all time, without context you may wonder why he’s struggled recently to get back into the NHL. Mike Keenan does not play well with others. Whether he’s feuding with a Senior V.P., or a General Manager, or with superstars such as Trevor Linden, Brett Hull, or Wayne Gretzky, no matter where Keenan is coaching he’ll struggle to get along with his co-workers. Even if he has seemed to calm down as of late his reputation as ‘Iron Mike’ Keenan will continue to hang over his head.
Kris Knoblauch
One of the most talked about names prior to this season, Knoblauch has done wonders for the Erie Otters. There's no doubt the teams he's coached were wildly talented, but some credit has to go Knoblauch who won both the WHL and OHL championships and capped off his OHL coaching career with four straight 50+ win seasons. Knoblauch is touted as being a teacher in the dressing room, maybe a good fit on a younger team. He's the obvious choice as an interim if a certain Dave Hakstol is let go.
Uwe Krupp
One of the greatest German coaches of all time, Uwe Krupp has coached Germany a total of ten times at the World Juniors, World Championships, and Olympic Games. In five seasons of coaching in DEL Krupp has led his teams to five finals berths, most recently losing to his former team Kolner Haie.
Doug MacLean
Best known for his role as a Hockey Analyst on Sportsnet, what many may not know is that MacLean had a five year NHL Coaching career. While most of his seasons as coach ended in disappointment, MacLean did lead the Florida Panthers to their first and only Stanley Cup Final appearance in his first season as coach.
Paul MacLean
After seeing plenty of success with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and Detroit Red Wings as an Assistant Coach from 2002 to 2011 MacLean was given his first gig as an NHL Head Coach with the Ottawa Senators. With the Senators MacLean was nominated for the Jack Adams Trophy in each of his first two seasons, winning it in his second season.
Jacques Martin
One of the most experienced coaches on this list, Jacques Martin is the 12th most winningest coach of all time, having amassed 613 total wins from 1986 to 2012. In 1999 Martin took home the Jack Adams Trophy after his Ottawa Senators topped the Northeast Division for the first time in franchise history.
Pierre McGuire
No I’m not joking. Every time an NHL coach is fired McGuire’s name seems to pop up brought up both seriously and non-seriously. McGuire had one brief NHL coaching stint with the Hartford Whalers. He was fired after only six months. Then Whalers captain Pat Verbeek called McGuire’s firing the best that could have happened to the Whalers.
Mark Messier
Messier has expressed interest in both General Manager and Head Coach roles and has garnered experience in both roles with Team Canada. It is unlikely that Messier will leave his position with the Oilers at this time.
Mike Milbury
Lmao, who doesn’t love Mike Milbury?
While Milbury extremely successful as Head Coach of the Boston Bruins the same cannot be said for his time with the Isles. With the Bruins he took the team to a Conference Final and a Cup Final, winning Executive of The Year and coaching an All-Star team along the way. His time with the Islanders on the other hand was a disaster to put it lightly. Milbury coached the team to some of their all time worst seasons all the while trading away key pieces such as Zdeno Chara, Bryan McCabe, Olli Jokinen, Eric Brewer, Wade Redden, and Roberto Luongo for scraps. When Milbury finally left the Islanders organization fans breathed a sigh of relief.
Kirk Muller
The heir apparent to Michel Therrien in Montreal (until Julien came along), Muller has spent plenty of time behind the bench as an NHL Assistant Coach with the Montreal Canadiens and St. Louis Blues. But his only job as an NHL Head Coach resulted in a poor stretch as Head Coach of the Carolina Hurricanes.
Andy Murray
No, not the tennis player!
With 20 years of NHL coaching experience Murray is a seasoned veteran. He knows how to get the very best out of his players and has a strict no nonsense policy. Since leaving the NHL Murray has joined Western Michigan where he had a very strong start with the team, but team has since gone downhill.
Terry Murray
Terry Murray (of no relation to Andy) a member of the Flyers 1976 Stanley Cup winning team returned to the organization after spending time coaching the Washington Capitals. In his time as Head Coach of the Flyers he took the team to a Conference Final and to a Stanley Cup Final in 1997. After his finals loss he moved back and forth between the Flyers organization and other positions around the AHL and NHL. He currently serves as the Assistant Coach of the Buffalo Sabres.
Todd Nelson
In his one short stint in the NHL as Interim Head Coach of the Oilers Nelson began to turn around a struggling team and finished the season stronger than many people expected. Nelson helped struggling young players such as Yakupov, Hall, and Eberle turn develop and finish the season on a high note.
Claude Noel
Although he was able to find success in the AHL winning a Calder Cup in 2004, Claude Noele has never been able to replicate that success in the NHL. Having the distinction of being the first Head Coach of the new Winnipeg Jets there were big expectations for Noel. Expectations that he did not live up to. In four NHL seasons with the Jets and Blue Jackets he never once was able to make the playoffs.
Ted Nolan
Ted Nolan is yet another familiar face for Islanders fans. After a very successful tenure in the CHL and between stints with the Buffalo Sabres, Nolan spent two seasons behind the bench for the Islanders. With New York Nolan took the Isles to the playoffs in his first season, but after missing the playoffs in his second season he was fired. Nolan was recently hired to coach Team Poland at the 2018 World Cup.
Adam Oates
Adam Oates is a great coach for a team with a strong defensive corps and a struggling offense. Oates spent two seasons with the Capitals and fans soured on him very quickly due to his offense first coaching style. After leaving Washington he took on an unorthodox role as a co-coach of the New Jersey Devils where he ran the offense and Scott Stevens ran the defense.
Tom Renney
Best known for his international coaching career Tom Renney has coached Team Canada at a total of ten World Championships, winning a total of three Gold Medals, three Silver Medals, and Two Bronze Medals. Renney has also seen success after taking over as President of Hockey Canada. Unfortunately that success never translated to the NHL.
Todd Richards
Todd Richards started his head coaching career behind the benches of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins where he led the team to a Calder Cup Final. After his finals appearance he joined the Minnesota Wild as Head Coach. After two disappointing seasons with the Wild he was fired. The season after his firing he was brought on as an Assistant Coach of the Blue Jackets. That same season he replaced Scott Arniel as Head Coach. After failing to make the playoffs in three of his four full seasons with the Jackets and starting his fifth season off 0-7-0 he was fired.
Luke Richardson
Luke Richardson left his job at Binghamton to pursue an NHL coaching job but as positions opened up he did not get a call. Instead of waiting around Richardson went to coach Team Canada at last year’s Spengler Cup, helping Canada capture gold. Richardson is often praised for his abilities as a teacher which may make him a good fit for one of the younger teams in the NHL.
Gary Roberts
Gary Roberts is a very interesting name to bring up in the Head Coach conversation because he doesn’t have any experience coaching. What he does have experience with is training and pushing players to their limit. It would be difficult to lure Roberts away from his current job as a personal trainer.
Larry Robinson
Not only was Larry Robinson one of the best defensemen of all time but he was also a very successful Head Coach. After a somewhat rocky start coaching the Kings, Robinson hit his stride with the New Jersey Devils. In his first partial season with the Devils he helped the team to a Cup win, and in his second season he helped the Devils ditch their reputation as an anti-offence team as his Devils lead the NHL in goals.
Patrick Roy
Hot head Patrick Roy showed that he was not a one trick pony when he took the QMJHL by storm as Head Coach of the Quebec Remparts in 2005, leading the team to a finals berth. Although he never won a championship in the league he did make the playoffs every single year and was a part of some deep playoff run.
After eight years with the Remparts Roy joined his former team the Colorado Avalanche. In his first season with the Avs Roy won his division and clinched the Jack Adams Trophy. Unfortunately for Roy things only went downhill from there. They were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs and failed to qualify in the rest of his tenure with the team. After the 2015-16 season Roy decided to step away from the Avalanche citing his lack of control over the roster as a main reason for his departure.
Lindy Ruff
Ruff is one of the most esteemed coaches on this list. After a fairly long NHL career, Ruff joined the Panthers as an Assistant Coach. With the Panthers he took a trip to the Stanley Cup Final which opened a door for him to become a Head Coach. In 1997 he took a Head Coaching position with the Buffalo Sabres, a team he would take to the Stanley Cup Finals once and the Eastern Conference Finals three times.
After some continued mediocrity, the Sabres cut ties with Ruff. Ruff then took a Head Coaching job with the Stars but was let go of after posting mixed (but generally positive) results. He's currently sitting behind the Rangers bench, waiting for Alain Vigneault to slip up.
Brad Shaw
Brad Shaw had his only chance as a Head Coach with the Islanders in 2006 when he took over for Steve Sterling as Interim Head Coach. The Isles’ performance under Shaw was mediocre and he did not return the next season.
Shaw served as Assistant and Associate Coach with the St. Louis Blues, serving under a total of four coaches, never getting the call himself. After the 2015-16 season Shaw left the Blues to pursue other opportunities.
Scott Stevens
One of the greatest defenseman of all times and also a serious bruiser. Due to some on ice shenanigans there are a few teams that will likely never reach out to Stevens, but leaving his on ice behaviour in the past, Stevens needs to be snatched up asap. He's a great defensive coach and had a huge role in making the Minnesota Wild's defense arguably the best D-corps in the NHL last season.
Brent Sutter
A member of the famed Sutter hockey family, Brent Sutter not only was a very effective NHL player but is also an effective coach. While he’s had two unimpressive stints in the NHL Sutter has been impressive when coaching the Red Deer Rebels. With 12 seasons under his belt as coach of the Rebels Sutter has led the team to some very deep playoff berths.
Darryl Sutter
Another member of that famed Sutter family, and arguably the most well known. Sutter knows success. He's taken three of the four teams he's coached to the Stanley Cup Finals, and took a fairly mediocre Sharks team to the playoffs in every season he coached them.
Sutter is best suited to coach a large bruising team. He's a tough coach and tends to sour on his players. Probably best fit on a veteran team.
Michel Therrien
Michel Therrien had a bumpy first stint with the Canadiens and the team didn't have much patience for him. He then joined the Penguins organization, working himself up to head coach, and taking the team to the Stanley Cup Finals. He obviously impressed the Habs as they took him back for another term. His second stint was mostly good, but the team and fans soured on him. Therrien is a stubborn coach, but not necessarily a bad one. He'll get another shot eventually.
Dave Tippett
Dave Tippett finished his hockey playing career with the Houston Aeros in the IHL and quickly made the jump from player to assistant coach the year after, later jumping to head coach in that same season. Tippett was immediately impressive, taking the team to the conference finals, before capping off his time with the Aeros with a championship. He was immediately snapped up by the Dallas Stars and massively improved the team, helping them win their division. In Dallas he cemented himself as one of the best coaches in the NHL. Tippett jumped ship to the Arizona Coyotes, a team that had never really done anything, and he quickly made them into a competitive team and coached them to their first ever conference finals. Tippett's coaching wasn't enough though as the team began to struggle despite his strong coaching, eventually parting ways for a fresh start in 2017.
Tippett runs a very good defensive system with some of the best boardplay that I've ever seen.
Troy Ward
Troy Ward has been around the block. He’s coached in eight different leagues in some capacity. He’s was especially successful in tenures with the Trenton Titans of ECHL and Abbotsford Heat of the AHL. More recently Ward has faltered, lasting only 25 games with the Vancouver Giants and then only 60 games with the Madison Capitols.
Ron Wilson
Wilson has made a number of deep playoff runs but he has never been able to win the big prize. Wilson may be best known for his time with the Maple Leafs where he failed to make the playoffs every year he was with the team. After he left the Leafs he had plenty to say as he called out everyone from Phil Kessel to Colby Armstrong to Maple Leafs fans. Funnily enough Ron Wilson’s last game with the Leafs was on a leap day so he quite literally was coaching on borrowed time.
Rob Zettler
Rob Zettler seemed to be Ron Wilson’s right hand man, serving under him as an Assistant Coach in both San Jose and Toronto. In 2002 Zettler did multiple jobs working as an Assistant Coach and colour commentator for the Sharks. After nine years under Wilson, Zettler decided to set out on his own and he joined the Syracuse Crunch. Towards the end of the 2012-13 AHL season Zettler took over as Head Coach of the Crunch and took the team to the the Calder Cup Final
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GDT: Growlers @ Reading Royals (Game 2) Nov. 17 7PM EST

Watch: ECHL TV
Listen: http://mixlr.com/nlgrowlers/
Tonight should be an interesting game. It is the second game of a back-to-back and the third game so far this year. The team who loses the first head to head game always comes out swinging in game 2 – especially at home. I expect this game is going to be very chippy. Despite the Growlers being 2-0 versus the Royals, they are closely matched teams. The first game was closely contested and led to a 5-game suspension for Melindy. Last night, Garteig stole a game that Newfoundland had no right to win otherwise. The last 2 consecutive games Gartieg stole in fact. Culina undoubtedly will be the starter tonight, so it will be interesting to see how the team in front of him responds. They are without Ferguson and Estephan, and need to forge a new identity. O’Brien showed leadership last night and controlled the game; tonight leadership needs to be throughout the lineup.
Rumor is that Ryane Clowe may be back behind the bench. He has missed 4 games so far this year for health reasons, likely related to his concussion symptoms. I’d like to see the team play for him. Maybe Nekolenko might play his first game? Nekolenko was put on waivers by Reading earlier this week after having come all the way from Russia. Although I am not sure whether there was some sort of gentleman’s arrangement for Nekolenko between the 2 clubs, but maybe Nekolenko plays angry?
I believe that Glen Stanford is building something special in St. Johns. With the maturation of the AHL as a true farm league and staging area for the NHL, the days of the AHL in St. Johns are over. Junior hockey was tried and failed too because of travel costs. The ECHL has become a perfect fit for the hockey-starved fans on the Rock. The timing is also serendipitous because the ECHL is evolving and is becoming a game worthy of the sophisticated hockey audience in Newfoundland.
Style of Play
The ECHL is not a goon league anymore. In the 17 games I have watched so far this year, I recall maybe 2 or 3 fights only. It has to be this way with everything we now know about concussions. While the game still has some roughness akin to NHL hockey played 10 years ago, the ECHL is a free-wheeling “loose” hockey league - it's like Junior hockey played by men who “should know better.” 5 or 6 breakaways per game is common. Rosters are constantly changing and travel schedules are grueling, so systems hockey is very difficult to maintain. Skilled players break-loose all the time. It is fun to watch. Because of this, hidden gems emerge from the rockpile of talent already picked-over many times in amateur drafts. Dubas said he wants to have the ECHL affiliate be the entry-point for many (most?) of the Leafs’ prospects. I understand this vision now. If you are going to run the Marlies like an NHL club with a dual focus on winning AND development, then you need a feeder club for rookies to transition into the pros without messing up that roster while they develop.
This is why I believe there is something very special developing in St. Johns. The Growlers are attractive to Newfoundland hockey players - a chance for the boys to come home and be part of something special on the back 9 of their careers. AHL clubs are too important to their Parent club to "care" about local representation; but the Growlers can benefit from NFLD boys who could easily play in the AHL or Europe, but choose not to. I envision guys like Melindy, O’Brien and Power being the cornerstones of the Growlers for the next 5 years. Pardy is 34 and has yet to play due to injury, but word is his role will be more of a Reggie Dunlop as he may transition into an Assistant Coach, if he has not already, at least informally. I am keeping an eye for Colin Greening to do the same next year. Head Coach Ryane Clowe is likely over-qualified for his role, being an assistant for the Devils, but I have to imagine coaching at home while he continues to struggle through severe concussion symptoms offers peace of mind for his family. From among those 5 men (and a few non-Newfoundlanders which I will write about in the future), an identity - and permanence - for the Growlers is developing. Few ECHL clubs have the ability to build such a foundation. Combine this regional identity with the vision and resources of the Leafs, and I think the Growlers will become the London Knights of the ECHL.
If you don’t believe me, just watch the games. Melindy was just named Captain and he is a beauty. That guy is like the mother hen on this team. If you target one of the guys, you better be ready to fight because Melindy will be. Or O’Brien - the moment he came off an extended IR he exploded on the ice like a bull out of a pen – 6 points in 2 games including 4 goals. O’Brien stated very unequivocally, get on my back, this is my team now.
A stable ECHL club with consistent coaching, leadership, identity, and success, with a strong fan base is an excellent environment for Dubas and Gilman to on-board prospects optimally into the pros.
Enjoy the game.
EDIT POST GAME:
Growlers win again! 5-2 and 8 straight wins! We learned during the broadcast that the Growlers went through travel hell trying to make yesterday's game. It led to missing 2 full days of skating. They played pretty bad, but Garteig held them in to win 5-4 in OT. Today they played much better and simply were the better team on the ice sweeping the 3 game series to date with Reading. Culina played really well. Culina and Garteig is one of the better tandems in the ECHL. Much like Estephan and Ferguson, I doubt McAdam will be back either. The team is STILL missing 3 of its best players in Pardy, Pospisil and Gudbranson, plus Plouffe has been out 2 games too. What we have learned is that opposing teams never play their backup goalies against NFLD in their back to back games because NFLD is too good. Doesn't matter though; they still lose :)
Next game will be Nov. 21st against the Jacksonville Icemen. Jacksonville is one of the best teams in the ECHL and in Newfoundland's conference. Newfoundland is #1 in the Eastern Conference in points and winning %. Jacksonville is #3. Think Leafs vs. Lightning. This will be a big game.
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With Gulutzan having been fired, here's a comprehensive list of potential replacements

John Anderson
Kicking off our list is former Thrashers coach John Anderson. Like many coaches Anderson first saw success as a player in the NHL rather than a coach. He was a prolific goal scorer, racking up over 600 points with the Maple Leafs, Nordiques, and Whalers. Anderson spent a very long time with the Chicago Wolves in the IHL and AHL where he led the team to the playoffs in all but two seasons, and won three championships with the team.
In 2008 Anderson left Chicago for his only stint in the NHL with the Atlanta Thrashers. After two disappointing seasons with the team he was canned.
Craig Berube
Long time member of the Flyers organization, Berube started his career as an NHL enforcer. After an 18 year pro playing career Berube made the transition from Philadelphia Phantoms player to Philadelphia Phantoms Assistant Coach. Berube rose through the ranks, going from Assistant Coach to Interim Head Coach to Head Coach of the Phantoms to Assistant Coach of the Flyers, and finally to Head Coach of the Flyers. Unfortunately for Berube he lasted only two seasons before players and fans soured on him.
Dan Bylsma
Dan Bylsma once seemed like the best coaches in the NHL. He took the Penguins over mid-season and took them to the Stanley Cup. Then became the fastest coach to reach 200 wins. It's not all sunshine and flowers for Bylsma though, he isn't always well liked by his players and struggles to adjust his lines during games.
Jack Capuano
Jack Capuano came up through the Islanders organization, spending 13 years with them in some capacity. He saw limited success with the team but ultimately proved to be an ineffective coach at the NHL level, despite showing flashes of greatness at lower level leagues.
Guy Carbonneau
After a long and successful playing career Carbonneau served as an Assistant Coach for the Montreal Canadiens and the Dallas Stars. After the 2006 season Carbonneau took the reins from Interim Head Coach and GM Bob Gainey where he flourished for the better part of three seasons. In 2008 he narrowly lost in voting to Bruce Boudreau for the Jack Adams Trophy. But in 2009 Carbonneau was fired, a move that had fans angry and confused. After leaving the Canadiens Carbonneau took a year off from coaching and returned in 2010 to coach the team he co-owned, the Chicoutimi Sagueneens. Carbonneau lasted 15 games before he decided to resign as coach. He hasn’t had a coaching job since.
Marc Crawford
Marc Crawford’s start to his coaching career was lacklustre. After two mediocre seasons with the Cornwall Royals he made the move to the AHL where he began his climb to coaching stardom. With St. John’s Crawford shined, taking the team to the finals in his first season with the team. In three seasons with St. John’s Crawford impressed the Nordiques so much that he was offered the position of Head Coach. Crawford won the Jack Adams Trophy in his first season and remained with the team in their move to Colorado where he led the team to their first ever Stanley Cup.
Crawford was never able to replicate his success in Colorado and after a good stint in Vancouver and unimpressive stints with Dallas and Los Angeles he moved away from the NHL for a fresh start. Crawford moved to Switzerland to coach the Zurich Lions. Under Crawford the Lions won a championship and had another finals berth, but after a disappointing performance in the 2016 playoffs Crawford was let go. He’s recently come back to the NHL as an Associate Coach with the Senators, hoping to impress enough to earn a head coaching job.
Randy Cunneyworth
Loyal to the Rochester Americans, Cunneyworth spent plenty of time with the organization both as a player and a coach. Cunneyworth has been an on and off member of the organization from 1980 to 2016.
Cunneyworth had one stint in the NHL as an Interim Head Coach for the Montreal Canadiens. This move was highly controversial and was the cause of protests due to the fact that Cunneyworth could not speak French. After an unimpressive season Cunneyworth returned to his position as Assistant Coach only to be fired a month later.
Willie Desjardins
Desjardins is a junior hockey coaching legend. After joining the Medicine Hat Tigers in 2002, Desjardins took junior hockey by storm. He lead the team to a Memorial Cup berth and then two WHL Championships, as well as winning the CHL coach of the year. He followed this up by serving as a bench boss on Canada's 2009 gold medal winning World Juniors team. He impressed enough to get a look by the Dallas Stars, and after a few years in the organization, along with a Calder Cup, he moved on to his first NHL head coaching gig with the Canucks.
Desjardins surprised in his first year and took his team to the playoffs, but in his two seasons after that, the Canucks were a bottom team in the league. Expect Willie to get another shot at some point.
Kevin Dineen
Best known for his days as a player, Dineen is severely underrated as a coach. After some strong seasons with the Portland Pirates Dineen was given a shot as an NHL coach with the Florida Panthers. In his first season with the Panthers Dineen took the team to a surprising division title and playoff berth. Although he saw success in his first season he didn’t see very much in the two seasons after and he was fired.
Dineen has served as Assistant Coach of the Chicago Blackhawks since he was let go, and in 2014 he coached Canada’s Women’s Hockey Team to Gold at the Sochi Olympics.
Dallas Eakins
After spending seven years in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization the hype for Eakins was through the roof. He’d spent time as Leafs Assistant Coach and Marlies Head Coach and had done well in both roles. Many speculated that then Leafs Head Coach Randy Carlyle would be getting the can so the Leafs could hire Eakins, but that never came to fruition. Carlyle kept his job as bench boss for another season and Eakins joined the Oilers.
Eakins tenure with the Oilers was short and disappointing, but the jury is still out as to whether the blame falls on Eakins for that.
Scott Gordon
Another coach with ties to the Flyers organization. Gordon was Capuano’s predecessor in New York. He served as Head Coach for the team for two of the team’s darker years where they failed to make the playoffs. On the bright side he did help land John Tavares. Since leaving the Islanders organization Gordon served as Assistant Coach of the Maple Leafs before moving on to coach the Flyers’ AHL affiliates the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. He seems to have turned the team around as they've looked fairly impressive under him.
Wayne Gretzky
Who?
As a coach Gretzky had a disastrous four season campaign as coach of the Phoenix Coyotes. He hasn’t had a coaching job since.
Benoit Groulx
Current Job: Head Coach with the Syracuse Crunch in the AHL
“Tic-tac-tao!”
Benoit Groulx is best known for his role in Team Canada’s 2015 World Junior Championships win where he was credited as a huge factor to the team’s success. Groulx served as a long time Head Coach of the Gatineau Olympiques where he led the team to three championships. Between his 12 seasons with the Olympiques Groulx tried his hand in the AHL with the Rochester Americans where he did not see much success. In hopes to make his climb to the NHL Groulx has returned to the AHL as Head Coach of the Syracuse Crunch and took his team to the finals in his first season.
George Gwozdecky
George Gwozdecky is one of the most winningest coaches in NCAA Division I hockey history. With 592 total Div I wins he has amassed the 12th most wins of all time, and with 443 wins with the University of Denver he is the most successful coach in the program’s history.
Bob Hartley
Bob Hartley has won a major championship in every league he’s coached in, taking the Laval Titan, Hershey Bears, Zurich Lions, and the Colorado Avalanche all the way in his time with them. Most recently Hartley served as Head Coach of the Calgary Flames where he won a Jack Adams Trophy but was ultimately let go of after posting a negative record with the team through four seasons.
Don Hay
Having won the Memorial Cup and President’s Cup three times Don Hay has had a very successful career coaching in the WHL, but he’s found himself unable to stick in higher tiered leagues. Hay has had four stints with three NHL teams as both a Head Coach and as an Assistant Coach, none of which lasted more than a year. Hay also spent three seasons with the Utah Grizzlies in the AHL where he was never able to advance past the first round of the playoffs.
Peter Horachek
Always the bridesmaid and never the bride, Horachek has served as an Interim Head Coach but has never been given a shot in the NHL as anything more. This is likely in part because of his poor performance of both teams he served as Interim for.
Dale Hunter
Long time Co-Owner, President, and Head Coach of the London Knights Hunter has been a staple for the team and it’s hard to imagine him leaving the team for a coaching gig elsewhere. He did join the Capitals as Head Coach 2011 where his team underperformed and disappointed.
Mike Johnston
A good coach for a defensively minded team, unfortunately Johnston’s only NHL coaching gig was with the Pittsburgh Penguins who at the time were as far from defensively minded as a team could be. After his departure from the Penguins Johnston rejoined the Portland Winterhawks, a team he’s seen some success with as Head Coach in the past.
Sheldon Keefe
Sheldon Keefe is rising through the coaching ranks extremely quickly. After a championship win in the CJHL Keefe took the OHL by storm with the Greyhounds and transformed the team from a pushover to a powerhouse. In just his second season with the team Keefe and the Greyhounds posted their best season in franchise history. Keefe’s contributions to the team’s were recognized as he won both OHL and CHL Coach Of The Year. In 2015 Keefe was hired as Head Coach of the Toronto Marlies. In his first season he took the team to the Conference Finals.
Mike Keenan
One of the most winningest coaches of all time, without context you may wonder why he’s struggled recently to get back into the NHL. Mike Keenan does not play well with others. Whether he’s feuding with a Senior V.P., or a General Manager, or with superstars such as Trevor Linden, Brett Hull, or Wayne Gretzky, no matter where Keenan is coaching he’ll struggle to get along with his co-workers. Even if he has seemed to calm down as of late his reputation as ‘Iron Mike’ Keenan will continue to hang over his head.
Kris Knoblauch
One of the most talked about names prior to this season, Knoblauch has done wonders for the Erie Otters. There's no doubt the teams he's coached were wildly talented, but some credit has to go Knoblauch who won both the WHL and OHL championships and capped off his OHL coaching career with four straight 50+ win seasons. Knoblauch is touted as being a teacher in the dressing room, maybe a good fit on a younger team. He's the obvious choice as an interim if a certain Dave Hakstol is let go.
Uwe Krupp
One of the greatest German coaches of all time, Uwe Krupp has coached Germany a total of ten times at the World Juniors, World Championships, and Olympic Games. In five seasons of coaching in DEL Krupp has led his teams to five finals berths, most recently losing to his former team Kolner Haie.
Doug MacLean
Best known for his role as a Hockey Analyst on Sportsnet, what many may not know is that MacLean had a five year NHL Coaching career. While most of his seasons as coach ended in disappointment, MacLean did lead the Florida Panthers to their first and only Stanley Cup Final appearance in his first season as coach.
Paul MacLean
After seeing plenty of success with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and Detroit Red Wings as an Assistant Coach from 2002 to 2011 MacLean was given his first gig as an NHL Head Coach with the Ottawa Senators. With the Senators MacLean was nominated for the Jack Adams Trophy in each of his first two seasons, winning it in his second season.
Jacques Martin
One of the most experienced coaches on this list, Jacques Martin is the 12th most winningest coach of all time, having amassed 613 total wins from 1986 to 2012. In 1999 Martin took home the Jack Adams Trophy after his Ottawa Senators topped the Northeast Division for the first time in franchise history.
Pierre McGuire
No I’m not joking. Every time an NHL coach is fired McGuire’s name seems to pop up brought up both seriously and non-seriously. McGuire had one brief NHL coaching stint with the Hartford Whalers. He was fired after only six months. Then Whalers captain Pat Verbeek called McGuire’s firing the best that could have happened to the Whalers.
Mark Messier
Messier has expressed interest in both General Manager and Head Coach roles and has garnered experience in both roles with Team Canada. It is unlikely that Messier will leave his position with the Oilers at this time.
Mike Milbury
Lmao, who doesn’t love Mike Milbury?
While Milbury extremely successful as Head Coach of the Boston Bruins the same cannot be said for his time with the Isles. With the Bruins he took the team to a Conference Final and a Cup Final, winning Executive of The Year and coaching an All-Star team along the way. His time with the Islanders on the other hand was a disaster to put it lightly. Milbury coached the team to some of their all time worst seasons all the while trading away key pieces such as Zdeno Chara, Bryan McCabe, Olli Jokinen, Eric Brewer, Wade Redden, and Roberto Luongo for scraps. When Milbury finally left the Islanders organization fans breathed a sigh of relief.
Kirk Muller
The heir apparent to Michel Therrien in Montreal (until Julien came along), Muller has spent plenty of time behind the bench as an NHL Assistant Coach with the Montreal Canadiens and St. Louis Blues. But his only job as an NHL Head Coach resulted in a poor stretch as Head Coach of the Carolina Hurricanes.
Andy Murray
No, not the tennis player!
With 20 years of NHL coaching experience Murray is a seasoned veteran. He knows how to get the very best out of his players and has a strict no nonsense policy. Since leaving the NHL Murray has joined Western Michigan where he had a very strong start with the team, but team has since gone downhill.
Terry Murray
Terry Murray (of no relation to Andy) a member of the Flyers 1976 Stanley Cup winning team returned to the organization after spending time coaching the Washington Capitals. In his time as Head Coach of the Flyers he took the team to a Conference Final and to a Stanley Cup Final in 1997. After his finals loss he moved back and forth between the Flyers organization and other positions around the AHL and NHL. He currently serves as the Assistant Coach of the Buffalo Sabres.
Todd Nelson
In his one short stint in the NHL as Interim Head Coach of the Oilers Nelson began to turn around a struggling team and finished the season stronger than many people expected. Nelson helped struggling young players such as Yakupov, Hall, and Eberle turn develop and finish the season on a high note.
Claude Noel
Although he was able to find success in the AHL winning a Calder Cup in 2004, Claude Noele has never been able to replicate that success in the NHL. Having the distinction of being the first Head Coach of the new Winnipeg Jets there were big expectations for Noel. Expectations that he did not live up to. In four NHL seasons with the Jets and Blue Jackets he never once was able to make the playoffs.
Ted Nolan
Ted Nolan is yet another familiar face for Islanders fans. After a very successful tenure in the CHL and between stints with the Buffalo Sabres, Nolan spent two seasons behind the bench for the Islanders. With New York Nolan took the Isles to the playoffs in his first season, but after missing the playoffs in his second season he was fired. Nolan was recently hired to coach Team Poland at the 2018 World Cup.
Adam Oates
Adam Oates is a great coach for a team with a strong defensive corps and a struggling offense. Oates spent two seasons with the Capitals and fans soured on him very quickly due to his offense first coaching style. After leaving Washington he took on an unorthodox role as a co-coach of the New Jersey Devils where he ran the offense and Scott Stevens ran the defense.
Tom Renney
Best known for his international coaching career Tom Renney has coached Team Canada at a total of ten World Championships, winning a total of three Gold Medals, three Silver Medals, and Two Bronze Medals. Renney has also seen success after taking over as President of Hockey Canada. Unfortunately that success never translated to the NHL.
Todd Richards
Todd Richards started his head coaching career behind the benches of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins where he led the team to a Calder Cup Final. After his finals appearance he joined the Minnesota Wild as Head Coach. After two disappointing seasons with the Wild he was fired. The season after his firing he was brought on as an Assistant Coach of the Blue Jackets. That same season he replaced Scott Arniel as Head Coach. After failing to make the playoffs in three of his four full seasons with the Jackets and starting his fifth season off 0-7-0 he was fired.
Luke Richardson
Luke Richardson left his job at Binghamton to pursue an NHL coaching job but as positions opened up he did not get a call. Instead of waiting around Richardson went to coach Team Canada at last year’s Spengler Cup, helping Canada capture gold. Richardson is often praised for his abilities as a teacher which may make him a good fit for one of the younger teams in the NHL.
Gary Roberts
Gary Roberts is a very interesting name to bring up in the Head Coach conversation because he doesn’t have any experience coaching. What he does have experience with is training and pushing players to their limit. It would be difficult to lure Roberts away from his current job as a personal trainer.
Larry Robinson
Not only was Larry Robinson one of the best defensemen of all time but he was also a very successful Head Coach. After a somewhat rocky start coaching the Kings, Robinson hit his stride with the New Jersey Devils. In his first partial season with the Devils he helped the team to a Cup win, and in his second season he helped the Devils ditch their reputation as an anti-offence team as his Devils lead the NHL in goals.
Patrick Roy
Hot head Patrick Roy showed that he was not a one trick pony when he took the QMJHL by storm as Head Coach of the Quebec Remparts in 2005, leading the team to a finals berth. Although he never won a championship in the league he did make the playoffs every single year and was a part of some deep playoff run.
After eight years with the Remparts Roy joined his former team the Colorado Avalanche. In his first season with the Avs Roy won his division and clinched the Jack Adams Trophy. Unfortunately for Roy things only went downhill from there. They were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs and failed to qualify in the rest of his tenure with the team. After the 2015-16 season Roy decided to step away from the Avalanche citing his lack of control over the roster as a main reason for his departure.
Lindy Ruff
Ruff is one of the most esteemed coaches on this list. After a fairly long NHL career, Ruff joined the Panthers as an Assistant Coach. With the Panthers he took a trip to the Stanley Cup Final which opened a door for him to become a Head Coach. In 1997 he took a Head Coaching position with the Buffalo Sabres, a team he would take to the Stanley Cup Finals once and the Eastern Conference Finals three times.
After some continued mediocrity, the Sabres cut ties with Ruff. Ruff then took a Head Coaching job with the Stars but was let go of after posting mixed (but generally positive) results. He's currently sitting behind the Rangers bench, waiting for Alain Vigneault to slip up.
Brad Shaw
Brad Shaw had his only chance as a Head Coach with the Islanders in 2006 when he took over for Steve Sterling as Interim Head Coach. The Isles’ performance under Shaw was mediocre and he did not return the next season.
Shaw served as Assistant and Associate Coach with the St. Louis Blues, serving under a total of four coaches, never getting the call himself. After the 2015-16 season Shaw left the Blues to pursue other opportunities.
Scott Stevens
One of the greatest defenseman of all times and also a serious bruiser. Due to some on ice shenanigans there are a few teams that will likely never reach out to Stevens, but leaving his on ice behaviour in the past, Stevens needs to be snatched up asap. He's a great defensive coach and had a huge role in making the Minnesota Wild's defense arguably the best D-corps in the NHL last season.
Brent Sutter
A member of the famed Sutter hockey family, Brent Sutter not only was a very effective NHL player but is also an effective coach. While he’s had two unimpressive stints in the NHL Sutter has been impressive when coaching the Red Deer Rebels. With 12 seasons under his belt as coach of the Rebels Sutter has led the team to some very deep playoff berths.
Darryl Sutter
Another member of that famed Sutter family, and arguably the most well known. Sutter knows success. He's taken three of the four teams he's coached to the Stanley Cup Finals, and took a fairly mediocre Sharks team to the playoffs in every season he coached them.
Sutter is best suited to coach a large bruising team. He's a tough coach and tends to sour on his players. Probably best fit on a veteran team.
Michel Therrien
Michel Therrien had a bumpy first stint with the Canadiens and the team didn't have much patience for him. He then joined the Penguins organization, working himself up to head coach, and taking the team to the Stanley Cup Finals. He obviously impressed the Habs as they took him back for another term. His second stint was mostly good, but the team and fans soured on him. Therrien is a stubborn coach, but not necessarily a bad one. He'll get another shot eventually.
Dave Tippett
Dave Tippett finished his hockey playing career with the Houston Aeros in the IHL and quickly made the jump from player to assistant coach the year after, later jumping to head coach in that same season. Tippett was immediately impressive, taking the team to the conference finals, before capping off his time with the Aeros with a championship. He was immediately snapped up by the Dallas Stars and massively improved the team, helping them win their division. In Dallas he cemented himself as one of the best coaches in the NHL. Tippett jumped ship to the Arizona Coyotes, a team that had never really done anything, and he quickly made them into a competitive team and coached them to their first ever conference finals. Tippett's coaching wasn't enough though as the team began to struggle despite his strong coaching, eventually parting ways for a fresh start in 2017.
Tippett runs a very good defensive system with some of the best boardplay that I've ever seen.
Alain Vigneault
A tried and true coach, Vigneault has seen some level of success in each of his coaching tenures, including two trips to the Stanley Cup Finals. Vigneault's system relies on speedy players and strong passers that can force high danger opportunities.
Troy Ward
Troy Ward has been around the block. He’s coached in eight different leagues in some capacity. He’s was especially successful in tenures with the Trenton Titans of ECHL and Abbotsford Heat of the AHL. More recently Ward has faltered, lasting only 25 games with the Vancouver Giants and then only 60 games with the Madison Capitols.
Ron Wilson
Wilson has made a number of deep playoff runs but he has never been able to win the big prize. Wilson may be best known for his time with the Maple Leafs where he failed to make the playoffs every year he was with the team. After he left the Leafs he had plenty to say as he called out everyone from Phil Kessel to Colby Armstrong to Maple Leafs fans. Funnily enough Ron Wilson’s last game with the Leafs was on a leap day so he quite literally was coaching on borrowed time.
Rob Zettler
Rob Zettler seemed to be Ron Wilson’s right hand man, serving under him as an Assistant Coach in both San Jose and Toronto. In 2002 Zettler did multiple jobs working as an Assistant Coach and colour commentator for the Sharks. After nine years under Wilson, Zettler decided to set out on his own and he joined the Syracuse Crunch. Towards the end of the 2012-13 AHL season Zettler took over as Head Coach of the Crunch and took the team to the the Calder Cup Final
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Denotes expiring NHL affiliations. Denotes agreements that the clubs have announced will not be renewed. ^^Thunderbirds to become St. Louis Blues affiliate starting in 2020-21 season. ^Affiliation will change after 2019-20 season with Vegas Golden Knights purchase and relocation of Rampage to Las Vegas area. *Affiliation will change after 2019-20 season with Golden Knights’ purchase and Sustained success of 18 successive winning seasons under the current ownership and operation of brothers Dale Hunter and Mark Hunter is the latest chapter of a good London Knights history. Over those past 18 seasons, the Knights have represented the Ontario Hockey League at the Memorial Cup tournament five times, winning twice. Even more remarkable, […] The 18-year-old is one of three players from Germany in contention to go in the first round of the 2020 NHL Draft, along with Tim Stuzle and Lukas Reichel. speed and hockey sense that we covet with the London Knights organization.” In 4 games with the Devils affiliate in Bimhangton, the Fin had 6 points, earning himself an NHL call-up London Knights Tickets The London Knights are one of the most storied programs in all of Canadian junior hockey. An important incubator of young hockey talent up to the age of 20, London (then known as the Nationals) formed in 1965 as a Junior "A" franchise and an affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs. After the NHL stopped sponsoring junior London Knights Complete 2020 CHL Import Draft The 18-year-old is one of three players from Germany in contention to go in the first round of the 2020 NHL Draft, along with Tim Stuzle and Lukas

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