4 NHL Coaches on the Hot Seat
Hockey may be the coldest sport out there, being played on ice and all, but we're a month into the season, and these coaches seats...or benches if you will...are starting to feel just a tad warm. Todd Richards has already come and gone in Columbus. Who will join him in the unemployment line?
Claude Julien, Bruins
After an 0-3-0 start, Julien has managed to right the Bruins' ship somewhat, as they now stand at 7-7-1. However, with the talent Boston boasts, he may need to make the playoffs to ensure he remains employed with the team beyond 2016. Julien was rumored to be on the outs last year, but new management decided to keep him on. Julien has built up a lot of good will with the team, leading them to a Stanley Cup win in 2011 and back to the Finals in 2013, but if they miss the playoffs again with this talent, the new brass will want to add in their own guy to look toward the future. Making the East playoffs is no easy task these days. Currently, Boston finds themselves four points out of the last wild card spot in the East, held by New Jersey.
Bruce Boudreau, Ducks
An obvious choice, Boudreau's teams usually wait until spring to choke, but the Ducks are sadly ahead of schedule, averaging a league worst 1.65 goals per game. Anaheim was a trendy pick to win the Cup over the past few months, but their inability to score has haunted Bourdreau every step of the way. A former player himself, who actually had a cameo in Slap Shot, Boudreau knows the value of a veteran leader. Was Teemu Selanne really that integral to the Ducks' success? Last year it appeared that wasn't the case.
Patrick Roy, Avalanche
Avs fans speaking out against the great Roy seems almost unthinkable. Roy helped put Colorado hockey on the map, guiding them to two Stanley Cup titles and built up even more goodwill with the organization when he guided the young team to a Central division title after the 2013-14 season. But since that season, which ended in a heartbreaking first round defeat, things have gone downhill. Roy has failed to get consistent production from the young scorers that made 2013-14 so special. In addition, Roy's "tough guy" schtick could be wearing thin, and management could look to make a change soon.
Bob Hartley, Flames
Hartley, quite frankly, was on the hot seat last year, but firmly refrigerated it by leading his young Flames team into the playoffs, even taking their first round opponent down. However, much like Roy, Hartley has failed to get the consistent scoring from his youngsters. That's very tough for management to see, especially considering that the Pacific division is arguably the weakest of the NHL's four. This team has shown that they can get hot (no pun intended) in a hurry, so all may not be lost. However, if the Flames are sitting home this postseason while, say the Arizona Coyotes move on, let's just say the Flames could make Hartley's vacation a little more permanent.
Did Geoff Magliocchetti miss your coach? Want to just rant about hockey in general? Rant away on Twitter @GeoffMags5490
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