Tag: Steve Spott

Peter Horancheck

Reunited: Spott joins DeBoer’s staff in San Jose


Seven years after they last coached together in the Ontario Hockey League, Steve Spott and Peter DeBoer will reunite behind the San Jose Sharks bench this season.

The Sharks announced on Monday that Spott will join DeBoer’s staff as an assistant coach.

“I’m excited to work with Steve again,” said DeBoer in a statement. “We have a great relationship and he has grown significantly as a coach in the seven years since we last worked together. We are very fortunate he was available.”

Spott spent last season as an assistant coach with the Toronto Maple Leafs after guiding the AHL’s Toronto Marlies to the Western Conference final during the 2013-14 season.

Prior to joining the Leafs’ organization, Spott coached in the OHL with both the Kitchener Rangers and the Plymouth Whalers.

The 47-year-old joined Plymouth in 1997 and spent four seasons on DeBoer’s staff as an assistant coach, before they both moved to Kitchener in 2001. Spott spent his first seven seasons in Kitchener as an assistant coach under DeBoer, helping the Rangers win a Memorial Cup in 2003.

Related: Heading back to San Jose: Sharks sign McLaren

Report: DeBoer and Spott could reunite in San Jose

Peter Horancheck

The San Jose Sharks officially named Pete DeBoer the club’s head coach on Thursday and are now in the process of finding assistants for the 46-year-old.

According to Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun, the Sharks have been granted permission from the Toronto Maple to speak with former assistant coach Steve Spott.

Spott and DeBoer have a history together dating back to their Ontario Hockey League days with both the Plymouth Whalers and Kitchener Rangers. Spott served as an assistant to DeBoer in both organizations before taking over as head coach of the Rangers when DeBoer took his first NHL coaching job in Florida.

Spott joined the Leafs organization as the head coach of the Toronto Marlies in 2013 and coached the AHL club to a 45-25-6 record during his only season behind the bench.

The 47-year-old was promoted and joined Randy Carlyle’s staff as an assistant coach for the 2014-15 season.

Spott was fired as part of the Leafs’ house cleaning in April.

Report: Leafs to speak with OHL coach Sheldon Keefe


The Toronto Maple Leafs are reportedly just one of two teams, which filed paper work to interview Mike Babcock for their coaching vacancy.

They may also have a name in mind to potentially join Babcock behind the bench.

According to Sportsnet’s Damien Cox, the Leafs are expected to approach Sheldon Keefe for a coaching role with either the Leafs or their American Hockey League affiliate.

Keefe, who coached the Ontario Hockey League’s Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds to a league-best 54-12-2 this season, has ties to Leafs assistant GM Kyle Dubas.

Dubas hired Keefe to coach the Greyhounds when he was named the team’s GM in 2012.

Toronto fired interim head coach Peter Horachek along with assistants Steve Spott, Chris Dennis and goaltending coach Rick St. Croix on April 12.

Prior to coaching Keefe appeared in 125 NHL games with the Tampa Bay Lightning scoring 12 goals and 12 assists.

Hockey Canada announces World Junior selection camp

Team Canada logo

Few countries would be disappointed in wining a bronze medal, but Team Canada will be gunning to top that at this year’s World Junior Championships in Russia. As for who will go for the gold, that’s still up in the air.

Hockey Canada announced their selection camp will take place December 11-15 in Calgary. Team Canada coach Steve Spott tells Mike Morreale of NHL.com they know there’s stiff competition to be had.

“If there’s anything I would say to Canadian hockey fans, it’s that this has become a global sport,” Spott said. “It’s no longer Canada’s divine right to win gold medals at any level. The bar has been raised, but it hasn’t changed our mindset where it is gold or nothing.”

One guy who won’t be suiting up for Canada is defenseman Ryan Murray. He’ll miss up to six months after undergoing surgery on his injured shoulder. Don’t feel too bad for Canada as they’ll still have a loaded blue line (as well as the rest of the team) with guys like Dougie Hamilton and Scott Harrington (among many others) as well as likely top five picks in the 2013 draft forwards Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin.

The World Junior Championships go from December 26 through January 5 in Ufa, Russia.

Will Gabriel Landeskog be the Avalanche’s secret weapon next season?

Gabriel Landeskog
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Nowadays in the NHL when you’re a top five choice in the annual entry draft, there are certain expectations that you could play in the NHL right away. You can look through the last few drafts and find a host of players who went from walking the stage in summer to jumping on the ice right away just a few months later to become the next wave of big stars in the NHL.

For second overall pick in the 2011 draft Gabriel Landeskog, he’s got a future teammate in Colorado’s Matt Duchene who did just that back in 2009. At 6’0″ 207 pounds, Landeskog is already built like an NHL power forward and with the type of game he can bring, he could provide a huge boost to the Avalanche lineup right away. With a top six that includes Duchene, Paul Stastny, and Milan Hejduk there’s room to crack the lineup to be a force.

One guy who thinks that Landeskog is NHL-ready right now is Kitchener Rangers coach Steve Spott, Landeskog’s coach in junior hockey. Spott tells The Washington Times’ Stephen Whyno that the stud winger is ready to roll for the Avalanche right away and doesn’t expect him back in Kitchener next season.

“I talked with Greg Sherman [Avalanche GM]; they’ve been pretty up front, and they’ve been honest with me that they expect Gabe to be in Colorado next year,” Spott said. “They’re gonna have a younger group of guys, so where he’s got him penciled in right now, we won’t get him back. It’s unfortunate for Kitchener Ranger fans, but that’s our job.”

In last year’s draft, we saw five players (Taylor Hall, Tyler Seguin, Jeff Skinner, Alexander Burmistrov, and Cam Fowler) make the jump straight into the NHL. This year’s draft class is a bit more unclear as to who might stay and who might head back to juniors and college hockey but with Landeskog’s size, skills, and the opportunity in front of him he’s got a great chance to make a big first impression.

The opportunity for Landeskog to jump right in is there. Outside of Duchene, Stastny, and Hejduk the Avalanche have the likes of David Jones, T.J. Galiardi, and Chuck Kobasew to compete with for time in the top six. If Peter Mueller is able to recover fully from concussion problems, he’d assuredly have a spot in that mix but there’s no timetable set for when he can play again, if at all. Those other players aren’t all that impressive and if Landeskog can subscribe to the the idea of seizing the day he can be a top line player for Colorado right away.