Once again we enter another off-season without a coach and the sheer disapointment of yet
another a first round playoff loss. The past two coaches have gotten the job done. In the regular season. Brent Sutter really looked like the solid coach the Devils will have for the remainder of his time, starting in 2008. We played the New York Rangers which really killed us. Winning only 1 game in the season series. You can't blame the coaching by Sutter but you can somewhat blame the players with their aggression. But I won't dwell on that. Jacques Lemaire, well in the first half of the year he was working magic. Then it tailed off. Lines changed and fans were not happy. Here we are after a first round loss once again and without a coach. Some rumors say Therrien, some say MacLean and a rumor I would like to see happen is assistant coach of the Chicago Blackhawks, Mike Haviland.
Haviland has really built himself up for a head coaching job in the NHL coaching in the ECHL winning 2 championships and advancing to the conference finals once. He is now an assistant for a Stanley Cup bound Hawk team. He is a jersey native that won't leave the team early. He is known as controling the defense in Chicago which means the Brent Seabrook rumors could flourish once again if Haviland is the coach. Lou likes guys that are defensive. Yet Haviland can still teach how to jump in the rush and get back when you need to. He's a younger as you can say coach that knows the new NHL. He is all around offense in Chicago starting with offense to defense. But he does have some competition.
John MacLean- Really seems to be the head runner since he is already part of the team. He could be the answer but my feeling is that it's not his turn yet. Already people are quick to give it to Mac with only 1 full season coaching. I still hope Johnny gets a job in NJ, in a couple of years. He is more of the coach of a rebuilding team.
Michel Therrien- This one is a little choppy. Reports out of Pittsburgh are Therrien has the job. Yet Lou himself says he never spoke to Therrien or even asked permission yet! Personally I wouldn't mind Therrien but I see Haviland beating him out.
Kirk Muller- This is interesting. I wouldn't mind Muller but he is more of an offensive guy. Lou doesn't want an all offense guy as he stated nothing will be changed. Muller would let players such as Parise and Zajac to flourish and letting Langenbrunner and Patty skate up more. If Kovalchuk signs it can mean a 50 goal season. But what about defense?
Guy Carbonneau- I haven't read anything that stated he was a serious contender but since he was with Montreal and is on the market I would think he would draw interest. He got Montreal to the playoffs and succeeeded in Devils terms as reaching atleast the 2nd round.... He is kind of an equal coach as he pays attention to offense and defense. Plus, he played with Langenbrunner is Dallas. Maybe this could mean something. Only a little though I guess.
Ken Hitchcock- His name really was in the blogs and newspapers but since names like Muller and Haviland have come out he slipped through the cracks as you can say. I really don't see him being the answer in NJ as he is way to defensive for players such as Parise and Zajac. He doesn't have a good reputation with rookies either and with the way Lou wants to go, I don't see him being a serious contender as I see Haviland, MacLean, Carbs, and Muller beating him out.
Now it is your turn, do you agree? Is there a coach I forgot to mention? Please feel free to criticize it if you feel different about my reasons. Thanks for reading.