Well, quite a few days in the NHL.
Big front office news in Vancouver and Philadelphia within a 24-hour period comes on the heels of big changes in Montreal last week.
The U.S. Thanksgiving marking point lived up to its fame with at least three teams making big decisions.
The Canucks got it going Sunday night with sweeping changes, including the firings of GM Jim Benning and head coach Travis Green.
It was the inevitable result but what didn’t seem clear for the last little while was whether owner Francesco Aquilini was going to wait until after the season or not.
We got our answer.
Aquilini himself hired new coach Bruce Boudreau, according to sources. You don’t see an owner hiring a coach directly that often.
Boudreau, sources say, signed for $2 million this season and $2.5. million near year, a decent bargain for a coach with his pedigree. Green, last summer, signed a two-year extension worth $2.75 million a year. So the Canucks are paying two coaches a total of $4.75 million this season and $5.25 million next season. Which is really no big deal when you consider the Flyers now owe fired head coach Alain Vigneault $5 million a year through 2023-24.
More on the Flyers later.
It’ll be fun to watch Boudreau try to re-energize the Canucks. He’ll want to implement system changes right away and get the team to play a more up-tempo, aggressive style. From a style aspect, I think the players will appreciate that. But I also feel Green is a good coach who will re-surface elsewhere so let’s not put it all on him.
More intriguing moving forward, of course, will be the re-shaping of the Canucks front office as our Thomas Drance wrote Sunday night.
Stan Smyl is the interim GM but let’s see what Canucks ownership decides to do long-term.