Will Rowe go, or no?
That was the question posed to Florida assistant co-general manager Eric Joyce on Wednesday, in the wake of reports that interim head coach Tom Rowe would be relieved of his duties following this season.
Joyce wouldn’t say yes, but he wouldn’t say no either.
“This sounds like a stock answer. I don’t think those decisions have been made yet,’’ Joyce told radio station WQAM 560, per the Sun-Sentinel. “Every year we take stock in how the season went. We try to improve as a group. Obviously, I thought this year was a frustrating season, a frustrating finish.
“We were in third place after that great road trip we had, then we came home and lost eight of nine. Obviously, something wasn’t going well there. We just have to figure out [what], but we haven’t really thought about that.”
Rowe has increasingly come under fire in recent weeks. There was the questionable handling of Aaron Ekblad‘s return from a concussion — Rowe expressed regret over playing Ekblad and potentially letting him return too soon — and the bench boss also raised eyebrows by calling out Reilly Smith following a loss in early March.
Prior to Monday’s loss to the Canadiens, a plane flew overhead the BB&T Center towing the message: “Rowe must go! Call him a cab!”
The Panthers were 11-10-1 upon firing former head coach Gerard Gallant (the inspiration for the “call him a cab” part of the aforementioned banner).
Under Rowe, they’ve gone 22-25-10, and will miss the playoffs for the 14th time in the last 16 seasons.