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Coaching Carousel

 
Daily Transactions · Trade Tracker · Coaching Carousel
Columbus Blue Jackets
Old Coach: Ken Hitchcock (Fired, Feb. 3) New Coach: Claude Noel (interim)
Analysis: Hitchcock may have guided the Blue Jackets to their first playoff appearance, but the momentum ended up being short-lived. Columbus opened the season with a 12-6-2 record before it all started coming apart. The Blue Jackets lost 21 of their next 24 games, and fell to 20th in offense and 27th in defense. Having three of the team's top youngsters -- Derick Brassard, Jakub Voracek and Steve Mason -- in the midst of sophomore slumps didn't help either. Given that the Blue Jackets respected Hitchcock and gave him every chance to succeed, it may be too late for Noel to turn things around. Columbus is 11 points out of the tightly contested eighth spot in the West. Full Story

St. Louis Blues
Old Coach: Andy Murray (Fired, Jan. 2) New Coach: Davis Payne (interim)
Wes' take: Murray spends long hours preparing diligently for games. But he tends to micro-manage as well, and in an era where coddling athletes is often necessary, his hard-driving personality grates on players' nerves after a while. One of the reasons he was dumped by Los Angeles was that players rebelled because he would slip note under doors with 'homework' assignments. Murray apparently didn't do that as much in St. Louis, but he did call a lot of meetings and ultimately his efforts stifled the development of the core players the Blues are counting on so much for their future. That meant Murray had to go. Full Story

Philadelphia Flyers
Old Coach: John Stevens (Fired, Dec. 4) New Coach: Peter Laviolette
Analysis: The Flyers expected much from a squad which features the additions of Chris Pronger and Ray Emery. Stevens struggled to get his wealth of offensive talent to produce, which led the Flyers to lose six of their last seven games and Philadelphia dropped to the bottom of the Atlantic Division. Laviolette amassed a 244-184-59 record in seven seasons with the Islanders and Hurricanes. He guided Carolina to a Stanley Cup in 2006. Full Story

Phoenix Coyotes
Old Coach: Wayne Gretzky (Resigned, Sept. 14) New Coach: Dave Tippett
Wes' take: The Coyotes did have some stretches of competitiveness after the lockout, but they finished in the division cellar three times and never got within 12 points of a playoff spot. Gretzky was supposed to guide the Coyotes through their rebuilding process in the last few seasons, but several young players actually took steps backwards last year and the organization even had to send down highly touted recent first rounders Kyle Turris and Viktor Tikhonov to the minors this week. So instead of being the white knight that saved the franchise, Gretzky's tenure will be remembered for coinciding with the time the Coyotes became the NHL's basket case and ended up in an ugly bankruptcy this spring. Full Story