Craig Conroy is now the Calgary Flames general manager, and one of the first tasks on his checklist is to find the new coach of the Calgary Flames. For weeks the hockey world has been discussing who the new coach just might be, with one of the candidates most brought up being Andrew Brunette. Now that more time has passed, Brunette has been hired as the head coach for the Nashville Predators, and some more names have been reported as candidates for the Flames. Now that we have seen some more reports, and that more progress has been made in the Flames search, who do fans think will be the next head coach? We asked, you answered.
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Well, fans seem even more convinced than before that this is Mitch Love’s job to lose. It’s easy to see why fans want him as coach. Through times where young prospects never got a chance to jump into the NHL, nobody knows the quality of the organization’s young players more than Mitch Love. Love is a players’ coach and seems to be loved by every single player he coaches. He has had massive success with the Calgary Wranglers for two years in a row now, and he seems bound to be in the NHL. There is no doubt that he is very high on the Flames list.
This is a new name that came up, but also a very intriguing one. The former Flame’s only coaching experience in the NHL was with the St. Louis Blues as an assistant coach, however, he is the current head coach of the Windsor Spitfires in the OHL. One thing about Savard is he fits the coaching style that the Flames are looking for, as he is known to have an “elite offensive mind“. That should be music to Jonathan Hubderdeau’s ears. It’ll be interesting to see how far Savard makes it through the interview process, or if he even gets the head coaching job.
Muller was brought in as an associate coach when Darryl Sutter was hired in 2021. There are reports that Muller has been receiving interest by other teams in the NHL for their head coaching positions as well. Muller coached the Carolina Hurricanes from 2011 to 2014. The Hurricanes never made the playoffs those years, as Muller would coach them to around 0.500 records each year. The Flames seem like they might be in the same situation with Muller as they are in with Mitch Love. One of them might just go to a different job outside of the Flames organization if they don’t land the head coaching gig.
Probably the most recognizable name in the hockey community out of all the Flames coaching candidates is Gerard Gallant. The former head coach of the New York Rangers was fired right after they lost their playoff series against the New Jersey Devils in seven games. He previously coached the Las Vegas Golden Knights, Florida Panthers, and the Colombus Blue Jackets. During his time in Florida, Gallant coached none other than Jonathan Hubderdeau.
Gallant is an offensive-minded head coach, however, he is also like Darryl Sutter in a way. Gallant, just like Sutter, looks to have a lot of influence, and also does not adapt or change his coaching style. There is a big risk that bringing in Gallant will cause the prospects to see more of the stubbornness and unwillingness to put younger players in the lineup.
Decisions will need to be made
There are other candidates for the Flames too like Ryan Huska and Pascal Vincent. One thing that is for certain is that the process will reach it’s final stages soon here, and Conroy will have to make sure that he hires a coach that not only gets the best out of the Flames top paid players, but will also recognize the value and potential the the Flames younger players can bring to the lineup.
Calgary Flames 2023 Head Coach Candidate Profiles
June 12, 2023 Update: Ryan Huska has been named head coach of the Calgary Flames! Check out Huska’s coaching profile for more information on him.
Here are past individual profiles on all the potential head coaches the Flames should or shouldn’t have considered for the new job: