2021 Rangers Coaching Search

The latest on the coaching carousel around the league

Elliotte Friedman spoke about the coaching carousel Wednesday on NHL Now and said:

On Rick Tocchet interviewing with the Rangers and Seattle, “I don’t know if he’s had them yet or if he is to have them, I’m not sure the exact timeline, but he is going to be interviewed by those two teams and I wouldn’t be surprised, depending on what else opens up, if he gets interviewed elsewhere. One of the things we don’t know here yet is what’s gonna happen out of the first round? Are there going to be any more vacancies are any teams going to make changes based on their results. I don’t think we have a full picture yet of the coaching carousel and Tocchet has those two interviews and I wouldn’t be surprised, depending on what happens, if he gets even more, he’s a really good coach.”


On the coaching carousel in general, “One of the things that I’m really curious about is Buffalo. That is because I think Bruce Boudreau, in particular, would love to coach there. I think John Tortorella would love to coach there. Tortorella has a long history with the Sabres, Boudreau has run a hockey camp for a long time just across the border in Ontario and is from Toronto. I think those two guys would love to be there. Gallant, we know he interviewed with the Rangers, I believe he will also interview in Columbus. One of the other things that is kind of interesting is, what happens depending on the first round, what are some of these situations. If Travis Green doesn’t go back to Vancouver, Jim Benning and Claude Julien have a connection and there has been some open speculation in Vancouver that Julien could be a target there if the Canucks job comes open.”

Larry Brooks wrote in the NY Post that Chris Drury is starting this process with a “short list of candidates,” but that the list could expand depending on how certain teams fare in the playoffs.

Brooks mentions Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy and Penguins coach, and former Rangers assistant, Mike Sullivan as potential candidates if their teams lose and they are fired. (NY Post)

Adam Rotter: I find it hard to see either Cassidy or Sullivan hitting the market, but Sullivan would be the most interesting candidate for a ton of reasons. There is obviously his success in winning back-to-back cups with Pittsburgh a few years ago, but he has deep ties with Chris Drury as Sullivan was an assistant for almost all of Drury’s Rangers career and the two have ties through USA Hockey and Boston University as well. Sullivan is also extremely close with the man he’d be replacing in David Quinn with some speculating that Quinn could join Pittsburgh as an assistant in his next role.

Cassidy went to Game 7 with Boston in 2019 before they lost to St. Louis, so while he hasn’t won the Stanley Cup he has the same kind of experience that Alain Vigneault had when he was hired. He coaches a heavy team and they were decimated with injuries for large parts of the season, but they stayed afloat and are battling with Washington in the first round right now.

The thing that works out is that the first round should be over by the time Gallant returns from the World Championships, so hopefully by then the Rangers will have all of their options out there and they can go forward from there.