Cox: Eakins may return to Maple Leafs

Elliotte Friedman and Damien Cox discuss the latest news around the hockey world, including James’ Neal first-ever diving fine and the rumours surrounding top prospect Jack Eichel.

Dallas Eakins was fired by the Edmonton Oilers as head coach less than a week ago, but he may have another opportunity before you know it.

According to Elliotte Friedman and Damien Cox during Hockey Night in Canada’s second intermission “Headlines” segment, Eakins could return to his former coaching position in Toronto.

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“Don’t be surprised if he ends up back in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization,” Cox said. “He has held a number of jobs, including being head coach of their AHL affiliate the Toronto Marlies. This season, the Marlies are not having as strong a season as they’ve had in recent years. Gord Dineen, formerly Eakins’ assistant when they were both with the Marlies is now the head coach of that team. But Eakins as I said has done a number of things for the Leafs organization including player personnel and assistant coach.”

Eakins served as an assistant coach for the Maple Leafs from 2006 until 2008 and became head coach of the AHL Marlies in 2009. Under Eakins’ watch, the Marlies became a contender, reaching the Calder Cup final in 2012, where they were swept by the Norfolk Admirals.

Currently, the Marlies hold a 10-15-3 record and sit fourth in the five-team North Division.

Eakins appeared on Sportsnet 590 The Fan's Prime Time Sports earlier this week and was asked about his future plans. While he said he’d take the holidays to catch up and reconnect with his family, he’d like to get back into the game sooner rather than later.

“My better half, she knows how I am. After probably two weeks of reconnecting and settling down and really being able to take stock of what’s gone on, I’ll be ready to roll to do something. And we’ll see what that is.”