Washington Capitals coach Barry Trotz became just the 13th bench boss in NHL history to reach the 600-win milestone when Washington earned a 5-4 shootout victory over Montreal tonight.
Trotz was 36 years old when he oversaw the Nashville Predators’ first franchise game in 1998. Since then he has coached continuously in the NHL. Although it’s rare for even good bench bosses to stick with one team for particularly long, Trotz lasted 15 seasons with the Predators before they decided to go in a new direction. He was quickly hired by the Washington Capitals to help the squad bounce back after a disappointing 2013-14 campaign.
He’s done just that, leading them to a 43-25-10 record. Along the way he’s managed to demonstrate that he can utilize an offensively gifted team. Washington has averaged 2.91 goals per game and Ovechkin leads the league with 52 markers.
That being said, the Capitals aren’t just looking to advance to the playoffs, they want to make a serious run once they get there, which is something that’s eluded them over the Ovechkin era. That’s uncharted territory for Trotz too though as he only won two playoff series in his 15 campaigns with Nashville.