LeBrun: The NHL coaching carousel is spinning fast, another set of UFAs is coming

LeBrun: The NHL coaching carousel is spinning fast, another set of UFAs is coming


It has been 12 months since the earthquake. NHL Brotherhood training.

There are coaching changes from the start of the 2021-22 season. Canucks, Canadians, Oil makers, Wounds, The Golden Knights, Panthers, Islanders, Sharks, Blackhawks, Leaflets, Red wings, Jets And The stars.

If you’re keeping score, here are more than a dozen organizations with new head coaches.

To track, off-season hires were:

• Peter DeBoer in Dallas (four-year contract with an average salary of $4.25 million)

• Bruce Cassidy in Vegas (five years at $4.5 million)

• Paul Morris at Florida (three years under $4 million)

• John Tortorella in Philadelphia (four years, $4 million);

• Rick Bowness in Winnipeg (two years at $2.5 million, nearly $3 million for third-year club option);

• Jim Montgomery in Boston (under $2 million for three years)

• David Quinn at San Jose (three years under $2 million)

• Luke Richardson in Chicago (four years at $1.5 million)

• Derek Lalonde in Detroit (unconfirmed term, but three years I believe)

• Lan Lambert at Long Island (unconfirmed term, but I believe three years with an option);

Martin St. Louis (three years in Montreal for $3 million a season) and Jay Woodcroft (three years in Edmonton for $2 million) also signed new deals after taking over their teams midway through last season.

We should also mention that veteran head coach Mike Sullivan signed a three-year extension in Pittsburgh, leaving him five years in total. He was on an existing contract through this season and beyond. The extension is believed to be worth around $5.5 million per year through the 2024-25 season, making Sullivan one of the league’s highest-paid coaches. Totally appropriate in my opinion.

While not 100 percent confirmed, I believe John Cooper is currently the highest paid coach in the league, at around $5.3 million this season (not counting the $5.875 million Mike Babcock is owed). Maple leaves (for this season, the last of that eight-year contract).

Even with all this activity, as we look forward, we know there are still some looming decisions elsewhere. Here’s a look at the head coaches entering the final years of their contracts — pending UFAs, if you will:

Dallas Eakins, Duck: New Ducks general manager Pat Verbeek decided to pick up on Eakins’ deal in April, which I think was a smart move to give the coach more time to evaluate. I’ve always assumed that a new GM should delay his first coaching change as much as possible. As a GM you only get so many coaching hires. And who knows, maybe Verbeek and Eakins can form the kind of connection from this roster rebuild that leads to a new contract for the coach. But as of now, Eakins, who took over as Anaheim’s head coach in June 2019 after four years in AHL San Diego, enters this season as a reserve UFA.

Daryl Suter, Flame: I wouldn’t be surprised if an extension was made here with Governor Jack Adams winning. My feeling is that Sutter would be open to it, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the organization discussed it with him beforehand. As we speak, the deal the veteran coach signed when he took over in March 2021 is entering the final season.

Lindy Ruff, Devils: This is my own read on things, not someone else’s, but the fact that the Devils hired Jack Adams tight end Andrew Brunet as an associate coach on July 15th (on a three-year deal) seems to indicate where this is headed after the season. , given the agreement to expire. But then again, who knows? I think the Devils are going to take a positive step as a team this season. We’ll see what that means for Ruff, 62, pending UEFA status.

Bruce Boudreau, Canucks: Who knew this season’s draft pick in Boudreau’s deal ($2.5 million salary) would cause so much panic and intrigue? But after a strange hiatus, it has been confirmed by both parties that the veteran coach will return this season.

Where does it go from here? That’s anyone’s guess. Signing JT Miller An extension shows the organization’s willingness to regroup while trying to win games, which is good news for Boudreau, who has a contender on the roster he’s been hoping for. Let’s see where the new year goes as far as the coach’s future is concerned.

Peter Laviolette, Capital cities: The veteran bench boss signed a three-year deal in September 2020 for a total of just under $15 million. My understanding is that there have already been discussions about the possibility of an extension. Whether or not that happens remains to be seen, but they are talking.

Apart from the reserve UFAs, there is a group of coaches who remain under current contracts this season and beyond, signed through the 2023-24 season:

Some of these situations may lead to early decisions by coaches entering their lame-duck years.

I think the Sabers are really high on Granato, and I could see him heading into an extension next summer if the team takes action this offseason. Keef’s future is straightforward, depending on whether the team ultimately makes it out of the first round of the playoffs. The Stanley Cup champion Avalanche would be smart to extend Bednar next summer, and I suspect that’s exactly what will happen. Bednar is making $2.1 million and $2.3 million this season. million next year, so he should be in line for a nice raise given his recent gains.

(Photo by Bruce Boudreau: Sergey Belsky / USA TODAY)



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