With the 52nd NHL Entry Draft looming, at the end of this week on June 27-28 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, the Pittsburgh Penguins continue to seek out a new head coach for the coming season.
It has been reported by Matthew Sekeres of Team 1040 AM in Vancouver that Willie Desjardins decided against the Black and Gold because there was just a two-year deal on the table and the front office would not give him complete control over the hiring of his assistants.
With Desjardins’ name eliminated, general manager Jim Rutherford’s list is also shorter by another: Marc Crawford, who appears to be heading back to Switzerland for the 2014-15 season. The ZSC Lions of the Swiss Elite League announced via their Twitter account on Sunday that Crawford was going to remain their head coach. The Lions are the defending Swiss Elite League champions.
Speculating on additions to the Pens interview list, Rob Rossi of the Tribune-Review suggested these possibilities: Jeff Daniels, head coach of the Carolina Hurricanes’ AHL affiliate in Charlotte; former Canucks, Rangers and Oilers head coach Tom Renney; and last, but not least, Mike Keenan, head coach of the Metallurg Magnitogorsk, 2014 champions of the Kontenental Hockey League in Rusia.
Another candidate mentioned by Robert Slavinsky of hockeytracker.net, is Todd Nelson of the Oklahoma City Barons – Edmonton’s AHL affiliate.
In my opinion, if Jim Rutherford and the rest of the Pittsburgh front office wants to go with an American Hockey League candidate, they should just stay in house and promote John Hynes from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.