According to multiple outlets (see here and here and here), Todd McLellan has struck it rich.
McLellan, who on Tuesday was introduced as the new head coach in Edmonton, has reportedly received a five-year deal worth $15 million — a $3M average annual salary that, for a brief time, made him the NHL’s highest-paid coach.
He has since been eclipsed by new Toronto bench boss Mike Babcock, who signed a reported eight-year deal worth $50 million on Wednesday — an AAV of $6.25M but, due to the contract’s front-loaded nature, could possibly reach $8 million in salary in each of Babcock’s first three seasons.
As for McLellan, his deal — though not as long as Babcock’s — still has plenty of term, which will allow him to grow with a young Oilers team that will get even younger next season when Connor McDavid (in all likelihood) makes his NHL debut at age 18. McLellan will also be tasked with further developing a relationship with 23-year-old Taylor Hall and 25-year-old Jordan Eberle, who he coached on Canada’s gold medal-winning team at the 2015 World Hockey Championships.
Edmonton is set to name Todd McLellan as its new head coach this week, according to sources of Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
McLellan, 47, would inherit a team that went 24-44-14 last season — the third-worst record in the league — under Dallas Eakins and Todd Nelson, who took over as an interim bench boss in mid-December (no word yet on what Nelson’s future has in store.)
Despite those ugly numbers, the Edmonton situation has to be appealing for McLellan. He’ll not only get to further work with Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle — the trio combined to win gold for Team Canada on Sunday at the World Championships — but will also inherit the No. 1 overall pick at the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, which the Oilers will use to select OHL Erie phenom and “generational talent” Connor McDavid.
McLellan has spent the last seven seasons in San Jose, making the playoffs six times while recording at least 40 wins every year (and three 50-win campaigns.) A former assistant under Mike Babcock in Detroit, McLellan’s been pegged as the frontrunner for the Edmonton job for a while; in early May, new Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli flew to the Worlds in the Czech Republic to interview him for the head coaching gig and the Edmonton Sun reported both Hall and Eberle had been asking “a lot of questions” of McLellan’s former player, Team Canada d-man Brent Burns, while also praising their experience under the ex-Sharks bench boss.
Assuming the Sportsnet report is accurate and McLellan does get the Oilers gig, the team will also get an assistant coach as well. In speaking with the Sun, McLellan acknowledged he already has a hire in mind: Jay Woodcroft, his longtime right-hand man in San Jose.
“Jay, if I get the opportunity to move on, will be part of my staff. I believe in him that much,” McLellan explained. “I think it’s really important when you find a guy that you can trust and who can keep you organized and prepared and works his butt off.”
Per Sportsnet, the announcement date hasn’t been finalized yet, but McLellan could be introduced as the new head coach as early as Tuesday.
Once again, Canada put together the best bunch of world-class players it could manage and overwhelmed the rest of the world.
This time around, their gold medal came at the 2015 World Hockey Championship, as they absolutely throttled Russia by a score of 6-1. The finish was fittingly lopsided, too, as the shot count was 37-12 in Canada’s favor.
Sidney Crosby factored into the win – including a goal assisted by best buddy in the world Claude Giroux – and now joins the “Triple Gold Club.”
HNIC’s Elliotte Friedman lists some other members of this made-up but impressive group:
It had to be a refreshing period for frustrated NHL players on Team Canada, particularly guys like Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle.
Russia finishes up with the silver medal while the U.S. edged the Czech Republic earlier on Sunday for a hard-fought bronze. There were obviously some missed feelings for Russia after such a drubbing in the gold-medal game.
In other tournament news, Jaromir Jagr took home the tournament MVP.