There was speculation this morning that Adam Oates or Scott Stevens would be Peter DeBoer’s successor as the Devils’ head coach. As it turns out the answer is both … and neither, per the Bergen Record’s Tom Gulitti.
Rather than have a clear head coach, Oates will be in charge of the team’s forwards while Stevens will oversee the team’s defense. Neither will have an official title. GM Lou Lamoriello will also be behind the bench, but he plans to do that for just a short period of time.
He isn’t sure yet who will be the next true head coach of the New Jersey Devils, although there will be one next season. Oates or Stevens are both candidates to get that gig, but it could also be someone else entirely.
Lamoriello openly admitted that this is “a unique way” of doing things. This unorthodox plan will likely do little to lessen the criticism directed at Lamoriello himself for assembling an old team in a fast, young man’s league. That being said, this, like anything in professional sports, will ultimately be judged based on its results.
Oates and Stevens are Hall of Famers and they both be in their element with their respective coaching duties. Oates has two seasons worth of experience as a head coach behind the Washington Capitals’ bench while Stevens previously served as an assistant coach with the Devils.