NHL Coach Hot Seat Ratings: Who's feeling the heat?

NHL previews: Atlantic Division | Metropolitan Division | Central Division | Pacific Division

In the NHL, coaches change as often as lines, it seems. Since last season began we've had seven coaching changes alone. With the league as balanced as it is, if you don't get results you're likely not going to stay long. Teams often opt for the change in direction to spark the team more than anything else. Frankly, it's easier than changing the roster.

With that in mind, we present the NHL coaches Hot Seat Ratings, a look at what coaches are as cool as ice and which are sweating.

Here's how the ratings work -- 0-0.5: Can't be touched; 1-1.5: Very safe, change unlikely; 2-2.5: Safe, but you never know; 3-3.5: On the bubble, feeling pressure; 4.0-4.5: Warm seat, better start winning; 5.0. Feeling the fire.

TeamRatingAnalysisCoach
1.0 Bruce Boudreau turned the Anaheim Ducks around in a huge way his first full season and was a Jack Adams contender. He might be hard-pressed to sustain over a full season, though.
0.5 Two runs to the Stanley Cup Final in three seasons and a Boston Bruins team that has been consistenly one of the best under his tenure? Yeah, Claude Julien is safe, Lou Lamoriello isn't his GM anymore.
2.5 Ron Rolston doesn't have much time under his belt but the leash still might not be long, especially if the Buffalo Sabres struggle as expected. Though I imagine he'll make it through, it could get rough.
3.5 Not a good spot to be in. Bob Hartley is expected to have the worst team in the league and the Calgary Flames added Brian Burke to upper management. Even with just one season so far, I would be worried.
4.0 Kirk Muller enters his first full season but he has been on the job for two years and three is sometimes all you get. The Carolina Hurricanes didn't meet expectations last year and in a tougher division now, heat will rise.
0.0 Simply put, coaches don't win two Stanley Cups in four seasons and face any questions about their job security. Joel Quenneville is going to be in Chicago Blackhawks a lot longer if he so chooses.
1.0 Patrick Roy replaces Joe Sacco and has been given a lot of responsibility. The Colorado Avalanche are going to give him time and see what he can do with a team that was near the bottom of the barrel last season.
2.0 Maybe Todd Richards' seat starts a little hotter but with the team's resurgence last season to nearly make the playoffs, doubtful. Still, the Columbus Blue Jackets didn't make it and life gets tougher with both expectations and competition.
1.0 New looks all around from the duds to the GM to the man behind the bench, Lindy Ruff. A well-respected coach, Ruff is starting with a clean slate with the Dallas Stars .
0.5 I'm not sure there is a more well-regarded coach in the NHL than Mike Babcock. The Detroit Red Wings aren't going to say goodbye anytime soon, nor should they. This is and will remain Babcock's job.
1.0 The Edmonton media might not love Dallas Easkins -- he took away the donuts for fruit -- but he comes in fresh and is being given an Edmonton Oilers team ready to take off. Enviable position and should be good for security.
2.5 As a rookie coach, Kevin Dineen led the Florida Panthers to the playoffs. Last year they were dead last and this might not be much better. His saving grace perhaps is GM Dale Tallon knows where the team is right now.
0.5 Since Darryl Sutter left the barn to come to Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Kings have been all the better for it and one of the best teams in the league. He brought them a Cup. And he makes funny faces. He's staying.
3.5 Yes, Mike Yeo got the Minnesota Wild into the playoffs (barely) last season but it just doesn't feel like his spot is all that safe to me. Any step back and he's in trouble but the good news is the new division is open for third.
1.0 Michel Therrien took over a mess of a situation and turned it around with a division title. Plus, he speaks French. So, you know, the Montreal Canadiens coach is in a pretty good spot.
1.5 If it were any other team/coach that we were talking about, the seat would be hotter. But this is Barry Trotz and the Nashville Predators here, they don't divorce.
2.0 A Stanley Cup Final appearance followed by a disappointing season and what is likely to be another. The New Jersey Devils 2012 Cup run helps alleviate the poor season. The good news for Peter DeBoer is that GM Lou Lamoriello seems to like him.
2.5 Before last season, Jack Capuano was sitting on as hot of a seat as anybody. Many were surprised the New York Islanders kept him. Now Cappy has a playoff team but I don't think he's out of the woods all the way yet.
1.0 Alain Vigneault comes to the New York Rangers after a long and very successful stint in Vancouver. He has a track record and the Rangers will be patient with him. Plus, New York should be in line for big things.
0.5 The Ottawa Senators have gotten better in both of Paul MacLean's two seasons and he won the Jack Adams. He's not in any danger. If he were, what would his doppleganger do??
4.5 Philadelphia Flyers brass has insisted Peter Laviolette is safe but I don't buy it. You miss the playoffs in Philly and the pressure mounts. I absolutely believe the Flyers have to get back to the postseason and maybe even make some noise.
1.0 All you need to know is that before they even bought the Arizona Coyotes , the new owners were insistent on re-signing Dave Tippet to a new contract (and they did). Tippett has nothing to worry about.
1.5 Is there perhaps a little heat on Dan Bylsma at this point? We saw hints of it last season as the Pittsburgh Penguins again flamed out in the postseason. Still, I don't think he has much to worry about.
2.0 Reports suggested that Todd McLellan was nearly fired before last season but he replaced some assistants and the San Jose Sharks got back on track. There's still a metaphorical leash but it's a lot longer this season.
1.0 A Jack Adams award in his first season and another playoff appearance in his second with still high expectations for his third. Ken Hitchcock has things rolling in St. Louis Blues . He's fine.
1.5 Jon Cooper is almost like a new coach as he took over midseason last year so he has some leeway. You would think enough to get through this season just fine. Still, he could stand to see the Tampa Bay Lightning get out of the cellar.
1.5 As a whole, Toronto Maple Leafs fans don't seem to like Randy Carlyle but what matters is GM Dave Nonis does. And the Leafs got to the playoffs last season. There is always some pressure in Toronto but Carlyle should be OK.
1.0 John Tortorella wasn't out of a job long, scooped up by the Vancouver Canucks . He has a challenge taking a team near the end of its "window" and his style might not be all that popular. But Year 1? He's good.
1.0 Things didn't start out well one bit for Adam Oates as there were literally people talking about firing him in his first season. Then his moves (like Ovechkin to right wing) worked and the Washington Capitals took off. He's set.
3.5 This is the Winnipeg Jets  third year in Winnipeg, Claude Noel's third year behind the bench. They haven't made the playoffs and there is a belief that the Jets should make the step now. If not I wouldn't feel good if I were Noel.
Show Comments Hide Comments
Our Latest Stories