- No tailgating allowed at Super Bowl XLVIII
- Pentagon to transport African troops to Central African Republic
- Chinese man fed up with his girlfriend’s shopping jumps to his death
- Ukraine leader to talk with protesters; Washington urges caution
- Pope Francis: A nun saved my life
- Israeli P.M. Netanyahu backs out of Mandela funeral
- Elian Gonzalez makes first trip outside Cuba since custody battle
- U.S., British intelligence agents enter online sci-fi world to spy on gamers
- Sarah Palin to host the outdoors show ‘Amazing America’
- CIA admits $3 billion intelligence operation was a flop
Capitals GM George McPhee taking his time to select next coach
George McPhee doesn’t look like a man in a hurry. The vacancy sign has been up for a Washington Capitals coach for a month now since Dale Hunter’s unsurprising departure, but the urgency to make a move before next weekend’s NHL draft isn’t there.
“We’ll get there when we get there. I don’t anticipate doing anything before the draft,” the Caps‘ general manager said Thursday. “We’ll work on that, but we’re working on other things as well.”
The clock’s ticking toward the start of free agency July 1 and there’s the inevitable concern about building a team while possibly not knowing who will be in charge. But for the first time in 10 years, McPhee has time in the summer to hand-pick a new coach, and he’s using it to his full advantage.
“When you do it in the summer, it becomes a real thoughtful process, real comprehensive. You can talk to a lot of people and come up with a plan for how you’re going to do it,” McPhee said. “We’ve enjoyed it. There are some terrific people out there and some real good candidates. We like where we are in the process, we like how it’s gone so far. We’ll just keep working away until we’re comfortable making that final decision.”
Naturally, McPhee wouldn’t name any names, and reading between the lines on his answers about NHL experience “not necessarily” being a prerequisite and the Stanley Cup Final ending “not necessarily” opening up a new pool of candidates would be a fool’s errand.
What McPhee has is time on his side. As Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin said in New York recently, there’s no need to have a new coach in place right away. He got his guy in Michel Therrien, but others are available.
They could include the likes of New Jersey Devils assistant and ex-Caps forward Adam Oates, Norfolk Admirals head man Jon Cooper and a host of names from Pat Quinn and Marc Crawford to Mike Haviland and Terry Murray.
“I think the whole league is obviously trending toward an up-tempo style of play. Everybody wants to do that,” McPhee said. “It’s not necessarily the style of play that’s most important. If you’re the coach, you’ve got to sell this to the players and have them buy in. And that’s what works: If you can get everybody to buy in. We’re going to take our time hiring that coach and nothing’s changed.”
Ten years ago, McPhee had time to make a call on a coach, the only time during his 15-year tenure he made a hire during the offseason. He wound up with Bruce Cassidy, who lasted just a season and part of a second before McPhee fired him and replaced him with the equally unaccomplished Glen Hanlon.
For this hire, “We’re wide-open,” McPhee said.
Not being in too much of a rush opens plenty of possibilities, such as looking at Oates, Cooper or Los Angeles Kings assistant John Stevens. Those coaches just got done with significant runs, and Cooper, who captured the Calder Cup in the American Hockey League, understands the value of patience.
“I think that would be the prudent thing to do. I think teams sometimes they want to hire early and they want to have their guy in the summer, and there’s teams that they wait,” Cooper said earlier in the week. “They just do their due diligence and wait for the best fit for them.”
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
- WHYNO: Tomas Vokoun gets unexpected Stanley Cup shot with Penguins
- Brandon Meriweather, Redskins' secondary ready for bounceback year
- Kirk Cousins embraces role as Redskins' offseason starter as RG3 rehabs from injury
- Capitals notes: Realignment won't prompt roster remake
- Despite Caps' first-round playoff exit, Adam Oates' first season as coach left a positive taste
Latest Blog Entries
- Redskins injury updates (5/23): WR Pierre Garcon, CB Josh Wilson each had labrum surgery
- Capitals 'love' Matt Hendricks, but how much?
- Wojtek Wolski signs in Russia's Kontinental Hockey League
- Tom Poti won't return to Capitals, plans to continue his NHL career
- Is Tom Wilson ready to be a regular for Capitals?
By Brahma Chellaney
Beijing's creeping aggression signals a challenge to U.S. presence in the Asian Pacific
- CURL: Obama tells a whopper on IRS scandal
- Tech companies call for an end to NSA online snooping
- Chinese man fed up with his girlfriend's shopping jumps to his death
- Obama lied about Syrian chemical attack, 'cherry-picked' intelligence: report
- WOLF: The president's other Obamacare lies
- Lawmakers see 'false narrative' of Obama as a terrorist fighter
- Ted Cruz sees legal landmines ahead for Obamacare
- MSNBC host: Obamacare a 'wealthy white men' racist word
- MILLER: Brady Campaign says Colorado recalls due to NRA, not grassroots opposition to gun control
- Mike Shanahan says he'd like to return; RG3 might be benched
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
The world impacts us. What happens in our towns, cities, states, country and on this planet makes a difference to us.
Happiness is attainable. Morning to night. I love to teach, deal with folks that have an issue and really wish to tackle it and write.
Brazen, leading-edge, “call it like it is” columns and reporting from Ohio native, radio host and writer, Sara Marie Brenner.
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow