Assistant coach Paul Coffey
It looks like Paul Coffey, who came into the position after Jay Woodcroft (and Dave Manson) were fired earlier this season with next to no coaching experience, has done a better job in the position than many, including me, anticipated. You can’t blame us when the guy has a very small track record as a coach.
You can get some more details here. At the age of 62 and with an already cushy job as an advisor to the management group, I get the impression this is nothing more than an interim job for him. Word is that it’s hard to find an assistant coach mid-season, so Coffey is just minding the store for now and in the offseason Knoblauch will hire his own guy.
But if Coffey is this popular as an assistant coach, it also wouldn’t surprise me if the interim tag was taken off and he takes over permanently as an assistant coach (until Knoblauch gets fired, of course).
Zach Hyman and Evan Bouchard secure their first-ever NHL award nominations
Congratulations to Zach Hyman and Bouchard, these nominations are well deserved. Considering the other names on the list I’d be very surprised if either guy won, but still it’s a great honor just to be nominated.
Hyman currently leads the Oilers in goal scoring with 17 goals (!) and 29 points (fourth on the team) in 26 games. He’s doing this with a shooting percentage that is currently 4.8 percent above his career average, so don’t expect this to become a new normal for him. By the way, he’s currently on pace for 54 goals, which would easily be a career-high for him as his current best is 36 from last season.
Bouchard is absolutely killing it as well, as he’s currently third amongst blueliners for points in the league this season with 8-24-32 in 27 games. Only Quinn Hughes and Cale Makar are ahead of him.
It would be funny especially to see Hyman win, as the heads of all Maple Laffs fans would instantly and collectively explode.
In less surprising news, Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl are both in the running for the Art Ross trophy too.