The Florida Panthers announced Tuesday that they have fired interim head coach Peter Horachek. Horachek replaced head coach Kevin Dineen on Nov.8 and led the Panthers to a 26-34-6 record over the final 66 games of the season as Florida missed the postseason for the 12th time in 13 seasons.

Horachek’s dismissal means that the Capitals are now one of three NHL teams with a head coaching vacancy along with the Panthers and Nashville Predators.

“We feel we probably need someone with more NHL coaching experience heading down the road,” Tallon said.

“The past few coaches we've had have had no NHL coaching experience and as a group we needed to find someone with more coaching experience. We're going to identify the guys who are available and find the guy who has the most experience probably.”

Don’t be surprised to hear the names Peter Laviolette and Barry Trotz – two names that have been linked to the Capitals’ head coaching vacancy this week- bandied about as the Panthers look to hire a 13th head coach in the franchise’s 21-year history.

“Barry Trotz is one hell of a coach,” Tallon told reporters Tuesday in South Florida.