It’s a weird morning in the Pacific Division, as the Vegas Golden Knights (24-19-6, 5th Pacific) have fired head coach Gerard Gallant and assistant coach Mike Kelly due to performance. The bench won’t stay cold, as former San Jose Sharks head coach Peter DeBoer has already been announced as the new head coach of the Golden Knights.
The move is ... well, baffling to most. The Golden Knights have spent a lot of the season competing at the top of the division, though they’ve been incredibly unlucky at times, as well. It’s easy to understand being frustrated by bad luck — it’s a little less understandable to make coaching decisions based on it.
But it seems as though a shift is happening in the league where front offices are becoming more open to cutting ties with coaches when troubles arise. Gallant is the seventh coach to be fired this season, and the fourth to lose his job due to performance.
Still, it’s going to be very weird to see Pete DeBoer behind the bench of the Golden Knights, especially given the intense history these two teams have shared over the two and half years of Vegas being in the league.
To make this even more awkward, Gallant was named the Pacific Division coach for the 2020 NHL All-Star game in St. Louis later this month.
Undoubtedly, front offices are going to be making decisions now that Gallant is available. Maybe the Sharks should be one of them.
News & Notes
- Golden Knights fire Gerard Gallant, hire ex-Sharks coach Peter DeBoer [ESPN]
- NHL rumors: Sharks plan to trade players but won’t blow up roster [NBC Sports]
- Down Goes Brown: Do these five stars have bad contracts? Welcome to Salary Cap Court [The Athletic]
- Three signs Sharks might be turning around disappointing 2019-20 season [NBC Sports]
Blood in the Water
- Examining Score Effects on Special Teams [Meghan Hall]
- Confessions of a Hockey Lifer with Scott Gruhl [Snapshots in Hockey History podcast]
- CBS Sports Nabs U.S. TV Rights to New 3-on-3 Pro Hockey League [The Hollywood Reporter]
- Skills competition to feature players shooting pucks from stands [ESPN]
- Jets broadcaster’s comments tone-deaf and ‘sickening to hear’ [Winnipeg Sun]
- Los Angeles Kings 3, Tampa Bay Lightning 4 (SO)
- Minnesota Wild 3, Pittsburgh Penguins 7
- Vegas Golden Knights 2, Buffalo Sabres 4
- New Jersey Devils 4, Toronto Maple Leafs 7
- Detroit Red Wings 2, New York Islanders 8
- Boston Bruins 0, Columbus Blue Jackets
- Chicago Blackhawks 3, Ottawa Senators 2 (OT)
- Vancouver Canucks 0, Winnipeg Jets 4
- San Jose Sharks 3, Arizona Coyotes 6
- Dallas Stars 3, Colorado Avalanche 2 (OT)
- Nashville Predators 2, Edmonton Oilers 4