When Richard Zednik’s throat was slashed by then-teammate Olli Jokinen’s skate in a horrible, but thankfully only life threatening incident, one other name came up time and time again: Clint Malarchuk. Malarchuk also had his throat slit by a skate during an NHL game but survived to play again … about a week later.
Here’s a link to a YouTube video of the moment. As you might expect, it’s pretty difficult to watch so proceed with caution there.
He’s also a bit infamous for an odd situation in October 2008 when he shot himself in the chin in a way that eventually was ruled “accidental under suspicious circumstances” by authorities.
Yet, when horrible things aren’t happening to Malarchuk off the ice, it seems like he’s producing some pretty solid results as a coach. The Atlanta Thrashers decided to make him their new goalie consultant today according to Chris Vivlamore.
The Thrashers named Clint Malarchuk as goaltending consultant on Thursday, completing the team’s new coaching staff. Malarchuk, who played 10 NHL seasons, joins head coach Craig Ramsay, associate coach John Torchetti and assistant coach Mike Strothers hired this offseason.
Malarchuk has spent two seasons as a goaltenders coach in the NHL. He most recently served in the position for Columbus in 2006-07. He also coached Florida goaltenders during the 2002-03 season. He was head coach of the ECHL’s Idaho Steelheads from 1998-2000.
I have to agree with some of the commentary provided by the Blueland Chronicle on the subject of bringing in Malarchuk and other moves made by new GM Rick Dudley (seen in this story’s photo).
What I find interesting is that Dudley played with Malarchuk, coached him in Buffalo, and hired him as a goaltending coach in Florida. So now the Thrashers have Ramsey, Torchetti, and Malarchuk, all of whom worked for Dudley in the past.
In addition to that, we have Darren Elliot, who apparently was also briefly coached by Dudley when he was called up to the Sabres in 1989, though Elliot had been here all along.
Looking at the records of teams Dudley has managed in his career, I’m not sure that populating the Thrashers’ organization with Dudley’s old pals is such a good idea.
That being said, you cannot truly begin to judge the Thrashers’ progress (or lack thereof) until the season begins. It’s been fascinating to watch Dudley’s rebuilding process, so it makes sense that he would hire the most interesting goalie consultant imaginable.