Toews, Oshie think college coach Hakstol will be good for Flyers

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A couple of Dave Hakstol’s former players at the University of North Dakota think the Philadelphia Flyers made a good hire.

“I think you’ll see him do well,” said Jonathan Toews, per NHL.com. The Blackhawks captain spent two seasons under Hakstol in Grand Forks, during which he was drafted third overall by Chicago.

The Flyers announced yesterday that Hakstol would be their next head coach. It was a surprising move in the sense that nobody outside of GM Ron Hextall’s circle saw it coming. But it didn’t come as a shock to T.J. Oshie, the Blues forward who played three seasons under Hakstol.

“With how many coaching changes there have been in the last couple of years, I was actually surprised he hadn’t been hired yet,” Oshie said. “It’s not going to take long for the players to respect what he brings to the table and to want to play for him.”

Hakstol spent 11 seasons as the head coach at UND, developing a number of future NHL stars in the process.

The Flyers are clearly hoping he can build another successful program in Philadelphia, while putting an end to a coaching carousel that, in the last decade, has seen Ken Hitchcock, John Stevens, Peter Laviolette, and Craig Berube take turns as bench bosses.

Related: ‘This was a gut decision, and I feel extremely comfortable with it’