The Vegas Golden Knights suffered a disappointing end to the 2021-22 NHL season, tumbling out of a playoff spot over the final few months. This is the first time in franchise history that they’ve missed the playoffs. As a result, head coach Peter DeBoer has found his name swirling in the rumor mill.
- Peter DeBoer Golden Knights head coaching record: 98 W – 50 L – 12 OTL
This season marked DeBoer’s third year with the Golden Knights and it was a major step back compared to his first two. His win percentage of 57.3% was more than 15% points lower than in either 2019-20 or 2020-21. This is especially disappointing considering the midseason trade that the Golden Knights made for superstar Jack Eichel, sacrificing future assets for present-day success.
The Golden Knights are not a franchise known for their patience. After experiencing playoff success during their inaugural season, management has shown a trend of being aggressive in making changes. They’re not going to sit around and wait for things to sort themselves out. Rather, they’re going to make tough calls that move the needle.
- “I want to be back. I’m excited about the potential of this team…I want to coach this team again. We never got the chance to do what I thought we were capable of doing.” -Vegas Golden Knights head coach Peter DeBoer to reporters in season-ending presser
It’s going to be a tough call for management on what to do with DeBoer. While his tenure has been far from a failure, the disappointing playoff miss this season coupled with a tough exit last year to an inferior Montreal Canadiens team has left many frustrated. If it’s not DeBoer, here are a few of the other options that could end up behind the Golden Knights bench.
Vegas Golden Knights bring in experience man in Barry Trotz
The biggest name on the coaching market this offseason is Barry Trotz. He was shockingly dismissed by the New York Islanders after a rough season despite the team having one of the worst travel schedules in recent NHL history.
He is one of the most experienced coaches in the league with almost 1200 games under his belt. He won a championship with the Washington Capitals in 2017-18 and has made it to 14 different NHL postseasons.
He’s known for installing a very defense-focused system that could benefit the Golden Knights as the team lacks a standout number one goaltender, especially with the current drama surrounding Robin Lehner. Trotz would bring a strict structure that the Golden Knights have never really used and that might be what the team needs to get over the hump.