I know, I know; I don’t post much about hockey around these parts, never mind the fact that I’ve watched the majority of the Stanley Cup playoffs this year without regret (except for suffering through the Avalanche getting swept by the Red Wings.) However, when the team you still have an attachment to decides to fuck up so egregiously when it comes to coach selection, attention must be paid.
So, yeah, I’m a little less than thrilled about the Avalanche digging back into the well and bringing back Tony Granato to coach the team again, four years after he stepped aside to be an assistant to Joel Quenneville after two years as the head man. It’s not that Granato can’t coach, but he had two very loaded teams to work with in his years as the head coach (Sakic, Forsberg, Paul Kariya, Teemu Selanne, Rob Blake, Milan Hejduk) and went 9-9 in the playoffs, with a particularly memorable exit to the Wild after taking a 3-1 lead in the series.
Do Pierre Lacroix and Francis Giguere really think Granato is the future coach of the organization in the long-term, or do they want a company man who doesn’t make waves? Because I really can’t understand how bringing back Granato takes a team with a good veteran core and some talented younger players and elevates them to a Western Conference Finals or Stanley Cup final, never mind winning the whole thing again. I’m not even really sure whom they could have or should have hired to replace Quenneville — all I can tell is that this is really just asking for regression.
How much longer until Patrick Roy’s done coaching his sons in juniors, anyway?
Photo: AP/David Zalubowski