By Allan Muir
Think about the levers that Washington Capitals coach Adam Oates had to pull to convince struggling superstar Alex Ovechkin to play the game his way, or how Mike Babcock guided the Detroit Red Wings into the post-Nick Lidstrom era with a rookie-laden lineup. That is a pair of remarkable coaching efforts right there, yet neither was good enough to make the cut for the Jack Adams Award, which is given to the coach who has contributed most to his team’s success. That tells you all you need to know about the quality of this year’s field.
The NHL announced this morning that Bruce Boudreau of the Anaheim Ducks, Paul MacLean of the Ottawa Senators, and Joel Quenneville of the Chicago Blackhawks are the finalists for the Adams, as selected by the members of the NHL Broadcasters’ Association. It’s pretty easy to craft an argument in support of any one of them.