Heading into the offseason, Carolina Hurricanes general manager Ron Francis identified goaltending as a major issue that needed to be fixed.
He’s already taken steps to do so:
— Prior to that, they dismissed goalie coach David Marcoux.
On Saturday, as the hockey world calmed somewhat from the events leading up to the trade/waiver freeze, the Hurricanes announced they had agreed to terms with Mike Bales to become the team’s new goaltending coach.
Bales joins the Hurricanes after spending the last four seasons as goalie coach in Pittsburgh, which just won the Stanley Cup for the second year in a row with Matt Murray, who only turned 23 years old in May.
“Mike has a proven history of success as a goaltending coach with the Penguins, winning back-to-back Stanley Cups,” said Francis in a statement. “Based on our research, we are confident that he is someone our goalies and coaching staff will enjoy working with, and we’re thrilled to have him in our organization.”
Before becoming the Penguins goalie coach, Bales worked as a goalie development coach with that organization, and in a scouting role to evaluate amateur puck stoppers.
He was promoted to Penguins goalie coach in August 2013 — about 14 months after the club selected Murray in the third round.
“He’s not a guy who’s going to yell at you if you do something wrong. He’s a guy that you want to work hard for and not in fear of, which is great for us,” Murray told the Pittsburgh Tribune Review in November.
“He’s not the guy that’s going to yell at you, but he’ll tell you when he thinks you can do something differently. He’s not going to tell you exactly what to do, but he’ll ask for your opinion on it, and if you agree on it and you think it’ll work better, he helps you implement it.”