Tag:Guy Carbonneau
Posted on: July 14, 2011 4:22 pm
Edited on: July 15, 2011 2:02 pm

Devils still without a coach: what's the holdup?

By Brian Stubits

What the devil is going on in New Jersey?

Here we are, more than three months after their season finished and the New Jersey Devils still haven't named a coach? General Manager Lou Lamoriello says a decision is coming. Some time soon, even.

"We will have a coach in the very near future, but not this week," Lamoriello said earlier this week.

Feels like that has been the standard response for a few weeks now. He is starting to sound like Chicago Cubs fans: Wait till next year.

The more time that passes, the more questions that are raised: Why is nobody taking what was not long ago a very good job? Why are the Devils going through coaches like kids through Halloween candy? Is Lamoriello tough to work under? Is there a dearth of desirable candidates? Is Lamoriello just being lazy? How many licks does it take to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop? (That's the only one I really know the answer to -- three.)

The list of names that have popped into the search at one point or another seems to be longer than Martin Brodeur's career. There have been retreads (two-time Devils coach Larry Robinson), coaching vets (Craig MacTavish, Ken Hitchcock), college coaches (Wisconsin's Mike Eaves) and everybody in between (hello, Guy Carbonneau and Michael Therrien). But naturally these names are just on a speculative list.

"I'm not going to get into discussions with reference to the coaching staff or anything of that nature," Lamoriello said. "There's [no coach] that has been named, so you can interpret it any way you want."

Then there's the ultimate retread: Jacques Lemaire. He has had three stints coaching the Devils, including the Stanley Cup champions in 1994-95 and last year's underachieving team that he made very competitive in his interim stretch.

Apparently his is one name you can safely cross off the list.

“I’m waiting for Lou to make his decision,” Lemaire told Tom Gulitti of the Bergen Record. “I’m excited like the fans, I guess, to find out who it’s going to be. It’s not going to be me."

That has to be a bummer for Devils fans. Lemaire seems like he'd be a good stopgap for another season as he brought out the best in what was an awful Devils team. But it is probably for the good to move on to a new era. Preferably a long-term stay in Jersey, considering the Devils have had 12 coaches since Lemaire first left after the 1997-98 season (counting each visit for Robinson, Lemaire and Lamoriello's own stints separately).

So maybe it's worth it to take your sweet time to hire the right coach. It's just hard for me to imagine it takes this long to find said coach. All the other vacancies in the NHL have been filled and it's been that way for a while.

For more Devils news, click here.

Photo: Getty Images

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Posted on: July 6, 2011 10:42 pm
Edited on: July 6, 2011 11:05 pm

Devils coaching search continues

By: Adam Gretz

National Hockey League teams go through coaches like normal people go through socks, and no team seems to go through more than the New Jersey Devils. Since the 2000-01 season the club has experienced 11 coaching changes, including multiple stints with Larry Robinson and Jacques Lemaire, as well as two interim appearances by general manager Lou Lamoriello. Honestly, it's an impressive revolving door.

This offseason the Devils are set to go through yet another change behind the bench, and an announcement could be coming within the next few days.

The name that seems to be jumping to the front of the line on Wednesday night is former Canadiens and Penguins coach Michel Therrien, which comes after former Canadiens coach Guy Carbonneau said he won't be the team's next coach, according to Rich Chere of the Star-Ledger. Sportsnet's Mike Brophy also mentioned Therrien as a leading contender for the job.

On Wednesday night Chere reported that Carbonneau had not heard from the Devils regarding their opening.
But Carbonneau, 51, who stepped down as head coach of the Chicoutimi Sagueneens (QMJHL) junior team he partly owns, was in Montreal tonight and said he has not heard from the Devils despite applying for the job.

"It's not the first time I've heard (the rumors)," Carbonneau said. "I sent my resume to all the (NHL) teams looking for a coach after the season. Six teams I received no answers."

Carbonneau said he spoke to Devils assistant coach Larry Robinson "because he's back with the team, but nobody called me."

Enter Therrien, who last coached in the NHL during the 2008-09 season with the Pittsburgh Penguins only to be replaced mid-season by Dan Bylsma, who went on to lead the team to a Stanley Cup championship.

I've always felt Therrien would be a great fit on a young team in need of direction (and a swift kick in the rear), similar to the club he inherited in Pittsburgh during the 2005-06 season. I'm not sure the Devils fit that mold at this point, but Therrien does seem to be the type of coach they might look for as he's defensive-minded and kind of a disciplinarian.

If nothing else, the possibility of Therrien returning to the NHL means there's a chance we can see more "tell it like it is" post-game press conferences, and that's something we can all get behind.


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