While we’re still waiting for confirmation of the actual Alain Vigneault hire, the soon-to-be new Rangers coach is already believed to be assembling his coaching staff, according to Larry Brooks of the New York Post.
One of those potential hires? Could be Vigneault’s former assistant in Vancouver, Newell Brown.
Brown, 51, had been an assistant/associate coach in Chicago, Columbus and Anaheim before joining the Canucks in 2010.
Primarily in charge of the power play, Brown initially achieved great success in Vancouver (had the NHL’s best PP in 2010-11, at 24.3 percent).
But, last season, the unit struggled mightily and finished a disappointing 22nd (15.8 percent) in the league.
Here’s more on the potential hire, from Brooks:
Brown offered an interesting observation/statistic regarding the power play in the aftermath of his dismissal by Vancouver, whicho also fired Vigneault and associate coach Rick Bowness. He told the Vancouver Sun that “77 percent of power-play goals are scored with at least two right-hand shots [on the ice].”
The Rangers currently have four right-hand shots on the roster who regularly worked (or not) on the power play — point men Dan Girardi and Anton Stralman and forwards Ryan Callahan and Derek Stepan.
The power play has been a sore spot for New York over the last few years. It finished 23rd in the NHL this season (15.7 percent), 23rd last season (15.7 percent) and 18th in 2010-11 (16.9 percent).
Didn’t take long for Alex Burmistrov to make his presence felt — though not in a good way.
Burmistrov, playing in his first game for the Jets after a two-year stint in Russia, delivered a questionable elbow to the head of Boston’s Patrice Bergeron late in the first period of Thursday’s season-opener:
Burmistrov received a two-minute minor for an illegal check to the head, while Bergeron received a matching minor for roughing (retaliating for the elbow, specifically).
The Bruins went into the intermission leading 1-0, and have yet to update Bergeron’s status.
Update: Bergeron stayed in the game, but B’s head coach Claude Julien was none too pleased with the hit. Following the game, he called for the NHL’s Department of Player Safety to look at it…
Coaches are quickly getting the hang of this challenge thing.
Following Mike Babcock’s successful challenge in Toronto’s opening-night loss to Montreal on Wednesday, Babcock’s provincial rival — Sens head coach Dave Cameron — got it right as well, successfully reversing Evander Kane‘s would-be equalizer in the third period.
From the league:
At 10:34 of the third period in the Senators/Sabres game, Ottawa requested a Coach’s Challenge to review whether Buffalo was off-side prior to Evander Kane’s goal.
After reviewing all available replays and consulting with NHL Hockey Operations staff, the Linesman determined that Buffalo’s Zemgus Girgensons was off-side prior to the goal. According to Rule 78.7, “The standard for overturning the call in the event of a ‘GOAL’ call on the ice is that the Linesman, after reviewing any and all available replays and consulting with the Toronto Video Room, determines that one or more Players on the attacking team preceded the puck into the attacking zone prior to the goal being scored and that, as a result, the play should have been stopped for an “Off-side” infraction; where this standard is met, the goal will be disallowed.”
Therefore the original call is overturned – no goal Buffalo Sabres.
The clock is re-set to show 9:32 (10:28 elapsed time), when the off-side infraction occurred.
As the league later noted, this was the first coach’s challenge under the offside scenario.