Stars name Rick Bowness as their head coach

The Dallas Stars formally named Rick Bowness as their head coach on Thursday.

Bowness had been the interim coach since December, 2019 when Jim Montgomery was fired for “unprofessional conduct.” Bowness coached Dallas to a 20-13-5 file in 38 regular-season video games earlier than main the Stars on their run to the Stanley Cup Closing. The Stars misplaced to the Tampa Bay Lightning in six video games. “After being called upon in a difficult situation, Rick stepped into the interim head coaching role seamlessly and used his unmatched experience to lead the team to a successful second half of the season and a spot in the Stanley Cup Final,” GM Jim Nill mentioned in an announcement. “Watching the team throughout our playoff experience, you really saw the team become his. His ability to connect with our players and our staff is remarkable, and it leads to a situation where everyone is competing for him because they want to see him win.”

The 65-year-old Bowness is the NHL’s oldest head coach. Earlier than becoming a member of the Stars, Bowness was an affiliate coach with the Tampa Bay Lightning for 5 seasons. He additionally has been a head coach with the Winnipeg Jets, Boston Bruins, Ottawa Senators, New York Islanders and Phoenix Coyotes, and has a 143-302-48-Eight file in 501 profession regular-season video games.

“This team is very special for me, that time in Edmonton was unlike any experience I have ever had in hockey, and it brought us together as a staff and as a team,” Bowness mentioned in an announcement. “We had a great run to the Stanley Cup Final, but we have some unfinished business left and we’re looking forward to the opportunity to build on what we started.”

Nill has been on the job since 2013, and is now on his fourth head coach having beforehand cycled via Lindy Ruff (2013-17), Ken Hitchcock (2017-18) and Montgomery (2018-19). The Stars have lengthy been outlined by their two star gamers – Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin – who’re each underneath contract via a minimum of 2024-25, with a mixed cap hit of almost $20 million. Nevertheless the 2020 postseason run marked an emergence for a number of the group’s ascending stars, like 21-year-old defenseman Miro Heiskanen, and 23-year-old forwards Roope Hintz and Denis Gurianov.

Bowness helped tweak the Stars schemes, serving to his defensemen get extra concerned in rushes, which led to extra offensive manufacturing. Within the postseason, Heiskanen (26 factors) and fellow defenseman John Klingberg (21 factors) have been the Stars main scorers. The Stars averaged simply 2.58 objectives per sport within the common season, however tailored to every opponent it confronted within the postseason – together with averaging 4 objectives a sport of their win towards the Colorado Avalanche within the second spherical.

Bowness’ hiring completes the hiring cycle for the 2020-21 season, with the Seattle Kraken holding the one head teaching emptiness.

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