The Toronto Maple Leafs and their embattled goalie coach, Francois Allaire, have parted ways.
And by the sounds of it, the break-up was less than amicable.
“To be honest, I don’t think the Leafs need a goalie coach,” Allaire told the National Post. “I think they have enough of them. They have two or three guys who were making decisions with the goalies. In the NHL, that’s not the way it works.
“If that’s the way they want to operate, then I’m not there.”
He added: “Maybe the numbers are not there with the Leafs. But it’s difficult to have the numbers when you’re not playing defensively.”
Take that, Ron Wilson.
Allaire’s most famous pupil – the one that put him on the map – was Hall of Famer Patrick Roy. Two other notable netminders he’s worked with are Jean-Sébastien Giguère and Ilya Bryzgalov.
But he leaves Toronto with big questions remaining in the Leafs’ net. Whether his “put yourself in the right place and just try to block the puck” philosophy is outdated, the talent he tutored wasn’t talented enough, or no goalie was going to be successful the way the team played defensively is up for debate.
Allaire joined the Leafs in the summer of 2009 and started molding rookie Jonas Gustavsson. The latter is now with the Red Wings after failing to live up to expectations in Toronto.
Allaire’s biggest success was current starter James Reimer, chosen 99th overall in the 2006 draft.
“I wouldn’t be in the NHL without him,” Reimer said Monday after learning of Allaire’s departure.