Posts Tagged ‘Peter Laviolette’

Coaching change rumored for Islanders; Is Peter Laviolette on wish list?

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Peter Laviolette coached the New York Islanders for two seasons.

Peter Laviolette had some success with the Isles before wearing out his welcome. (Ed Betz/AP)

By Allan Muir

A season that began with such fresh promise is unraveling like a Rob Ford lie on Long Island. The Islanders are in last place in the Metropolitan Division, and coming off an eighth-straight loss on Thursday night. They’re struggling to correct their course before the playoffs are completely out of their reach, but the outlook is getting grimmer by the day.

Something has to give. But are they really ready to pin the blame on coach Jack Capuano?

Botta is a top-notch reporter with deep ties in the organization. If he’s throwing Laviolette’s name out for public consumption, there’s likely more than a little smoke here.

And it’s a name that’s sure to catch the attention of the dispirited tribe known as the Isles faithful. Laviolette spent two seasons (2001-03) behind the bench on Long Island, guiding a hard-working team to the playoffs both times before being dismissed by infamous GM Mike Milbury in a fit of pique. Since then, Laviolette has won a Stanley Cup with the Carolina Hurricanes (2006), coached Team USA at the Olympics (2006), and guided the Flyers to the Cup Final (2010). These days he’s working as an assistant for Team USA, and is doing some heavy scouting ahead of the team’s roster selection.

He’s an undeniably capable guy…but bringing him on now would be a pointless move, wouldn’t it?

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  • Published On Dec 06, 2013
  • Fine for fuming: Notable NHL coaches who paid for their antics

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    NHL coach Jacques Demers tried to cheat by throwing coins on the ice to stop play.

    Bad penny: The wily Jacques Demers once tossed coins on the ice to stop play. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

    By John Rolfe

    Chicanery is alive and well on the sidelines these days as Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Jason Kidd of the New Jersey Nets had their wallets lightened by $100,000 and $50,000 respectively–Tomlin for slyly interfering with Baltimore’s Jacoby Jones during a kick return; Kidd for purposely spilling a soda on the court in order to gain a timeout in the waning moments of a loss to the Lakers. Their despicable acts inspired Down Goes Brown blogger Sean McIndoe to offer up a few notorious examples of NHL coaches behaving badly. The most interesting was Jacques Demers of the St. Louis Blues, who copped to tossing pennies on the ice during a 1986 playoff game against Minnesota in order to give his players a breather. Demers, believe it or not, got off with only a warning from the league.

    Other coaches have not been so lucky, as the NHL forced them to cough up some cake — though not nearly as much as Tomlin will surrender — usually for antics like running their mouths in an inappropriate manner or letting the rough stuff get out of hand. Here are 10 notable instances.

    John Tortorella, New York Rangers

    The fiery Torts has a history of throwing checks at the NHL. He was relieved of $30,000 for deeming the officiating in the 2012 Winter Classic “disgusting” and suggesting that the refs had been in cahoots with NBC in an effort to send the game into overtime. Three months later, he scribbled a one for $20,000 after impugning the character of the Penguins following a 5-2 loss. (Among his sentiments, Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin were “whining stars” who played for “one of the most arrogant organizations in the league.” In 2007, ripping the refs cost Tortorella $10,000, and in 2009, he was suspended for Game 6 of New York’s first round playoff series for squirting a Capitals fan with water and hitting another with the bottle after throwing it over the glass. For good measure, Torts also grabbed a stick, but was restrained by assistant coach Jim Schoenfeld, who was at the center of an infamous incident in 1988. (See below)

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  • Published On Dec 04, 2013
  • Top Line: Fizzling Philadelphia Flyers need shakeup; hot Blues; more links

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    Scott Hartnell of the Philadelphia Flyers

    A popgun offense has been grounding Scott Hartnell and the Flyers out of the gate. (Jeremy McKnight/Icon SMI)

    By Allan Muir

    An annotated guide to this morning’s must-read hockey stories:

    • For the second straight season, and just the fourth time in franchise history, the Flyers have opened with three consecutive losses. A shakeup deal seems inevitable after the team’s offense generated just three goals in those three games.

    • Scoring depth and a franchise record-shattering shutout helped the St. Louis Blues get exactly the start they wanted.

    • Anaheim’s Teemu Selanne was treated like a member of the home team in what could have been his final regular-season appearance ever in Winnipeg. You can get a taste of the love from this video.

    • In his Monday morning Short Shifts column, Jim Matheson touches on Patrick Roy, Marc-Andre Fleury, and the son of a famous Hollywood couple who will play Bobby Orr in an upcoming movie.

    • Sportsnet worked up an hour-long special on the herculean efforts to put the Saddledome back in working order after flooding devastated the city of Calgary this summer. Here’s part one and part two. Some truly amazing stuff here.

    • Here’s Calgary’s Joey MacDonald with an early save-of-the-year candidate. Ya think Chris Higgins replayed this one in his mind a few times while he stared at the ceiling in his hotel room last night?

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  • Published On Oct 07, 2013
  • Top Line: Peter Laviolette on hot seat; Joel Ward’s great escape; more links

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    Philadelphia Flyers coach Peter Laviolette could be on the hot seat.

    If his Flyers continue to struggle, coach Peter Laviolette could end up looking for work. (Andy Mead/YCJ/Icon SMI)

    By Allan Muir

    An annotated guide to this morning’s must-read hockey stories:

    • Everyone who has Philly’s Peter Laviolette in the first-to-be-fired pool has to be liking their odds right now. The Flyers have yet to score an even-strength goal through two games, and mustered just 11 five-on-five shots in last night’s 4-1 loss to Montreal. His seat is now officially hot.

    • There aren’t many players Montreal’s fans love to hate more than Vincent Lecavalier.

    • Joel Ward had some serious bathroom issues in Dallas yesterday morning. He may never hear the end of this.

    • With Nathan MacKinnon all but headed to the Hall of Fame after his first two games, the fate of Paul Stastny draws into focus. It’s a good bet he’ll be traded before season’s end, writes Adrian Dater, to ensure MacKinnon gets his minutes. If GM Joe Sakic can turn Stastny into a reliable defenseman, it would put the team on the fast track to playoff contention.

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  • Published On Oct 06, 2013
  • Top Line: Kings in the White House, Laviolette on thinner ice, more links

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    Defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings meet President Obama at the White House.

    Unlike a former Bruins goalie, the Kings were jazzed to visit the White House. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

    By Allan Muir

    A notated guide to this morning’s must-read hockey stories:

    • Here are a couple takes on yesterday’s visit to the White House by the Los Angeles Kings from and the Los Angeles Times.

    • President Obama couldn’t resist taking a jab at the Kings for beating his hometown Blackhawks.

    • In the wake of a passionless effort against the Rangers, several Flyers said they weren’t prepared to play against New York. That makes seven losses in nine games for Philly and drops them to 14th in the East. So, how much longer until Peter Laviolette joins Guy Boucher on the unemployment line?

    • Sidney Crosby’s goal and a shared shutout powered Pittsburgh to a 13th consecutive victory.

    • The Canadiens aren’t hanging their heads after the loss to the Pens. I really liked Jeff Halpern’s performance in his first game since being picked up on waivers. He was good on the draw (11-of-17) and was aggressive on the penalty kill.

    • With six goals in five games since returning from a broken arm, Joffrey Lupul is proving that last season wasn’t a career year. It was the start of something big.

    • You know Tampa Bay rookie Cory Conacher is making some noise if the New York Times is doing a feature on him.

    • The Blue Jackets aren’t playing with the same tenacity that marked their successful homestand, but they managed to steal a point from Vancouver thanks to another impressive effort from Sergei Bobrovsky.

    • The view from Vancouver? “The game was so bad, so offensive on so many levels”, but it revealed something about the Canucks and their identity.

    • This is pure greatness: A loving tribute to Vancouver’s history at the trade deadline.

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  • Published On Mar 27, 2013
  • Top Line: Winter and Heritage Classic news, falling Maple Leafs, more links

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    Gary Bettman and Jimmy Howard at Michigan Stadium

    What are you gonna do? Lockouts happen. But the big game at the Big House is on for 2014. (Paul Sancya/AP)

    By Allan Muir

    A notated guide to this morning’s must-read hockey stories:

    • “We are focused on one Winter Classic and one Heritage Classic,” said the impish Gary Bettman during a Wednesday conference call. Although he didn’t specifically commit to Maple Leafs vs. Red Wings at the Big House on Jan. 1, the commish did call it “a good rumor.”

    • They can console themselves that they’re falling to elite teams like the Penguins and Bruins, but with the losses mounting and points slipping away this stretch could prove deadly to Toronto’s playoff hopes.

    • Flyers GM Paul Holmgren says “he hasn’t even thought” about firing coach Peter Laviolette, which suggests he has the patience of Job or hasn’t caught his team in action much this season.

    • The patience shown by Detroit with its top prospects is a reminder that time spent in the minor leagues is likely to have a positive impact on the development of other teams’ recent high-profile demotees such as Chris Kreider, Mikael Granlund and Sven Baertschi.

    • That failed offer sheet-attempt on Ryan O’Reilly suggested the Calgary Flames will be active ahead of the NHL trade deadline. But with just nine games left before April 3 and his team swirling the drain, GM Jay Feaster’s intentions are harder to decipher.

    • The Boston Bruins continue to win but they don’t look particularly good doing it. Stephen Harris calls Thursday night’s second period “the worst ever played in this arena.” Yikes. Harris also feels it is unlikely that the Bruins will make a major deal ahead of the deadline.

    The Anaheim Ducks, not the Chicago Blackhawks, are the surprise story of the West this year. Here’s a look at some of the key second-half storylines surrounding the conference that ECM bias compels me to ignore.

    • It was just one loss out of many this year for the New York Rangers, but this was the one that dropped them out of the playoff picture. Is this the wake-up call they need, or evidence that this team simply isn’t as good as we all thought it would be?

    • Was it the career night from Andrew Ebbetts? The return of defenseman Kevin Bieksa? Or just some lousy goaltending by the Predators? Probably a bit of each as Vancouver swarmed Nashville, 7-4.

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  • Published On Mar 15, 2013
  • Top Line: Peter Laviolette looks finished in Philly, third period blahs, more links

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    Peter Laviolette may be fired as coach of the struggling Flyers.

    Flyers bench boss Peter Laviolette seems primed to take the fall for one of this season’s most disappointing teams. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

    By Allan Muir

    A notated guide to this morning’s must-read hockey stories:

    • Is the Peter Laviolette era coming to an end in Philadelphia? The Flyers’ rock-bottom effort in a 5-2 loss to New Jersey had all the hallmarks of a team playing to get its coach fired.

    • That little deal to acquire Andrei Loktionov keeps paying dividends for the Devils. A lousy fit for the physical style of the Kings, he’s looked right at home in New Jersey.

    • Is a willingness to settle games in the shootout leading to third-period malaise?

    • After his effort to win tickets to Thursday night’s game in Dallas was denied, we’ll have to wait and see if Bobby Ryan shows up for the game against the Stars.

    • Jamie Benn and Brenden Morrow are doubtful against the Ducks, meaning that the scouts who have been trailing the Stars may end up hanging out downstairs like they did Tuesday night.

    • Sidney Crosby opens up on visors, fighting and concussions with Mike Zeisberger.

    • Brad Marchand is mixing in a little more skill with his customary swagger for the Bruins. Come on, admit it…no matter how much you hate him, you’d take him on your team in a heart beat.

    • It’s amazing that Jake Gardiner didn’t fire his agent immediately after Tuesday night’s freedom tweets. If he was going to be called up to Toronto at some point this season, that door has probably slammed shut.

    • The Vancouver Canucks are wondering why it’s open season on Alex Burrows. No doubt he takes a beating out there, but I’m not sure he gets it any worse than anyone else who makes a living in the goal mouth.

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  • Published On Mar 14, 2013