Randy Carlyle became the latest coach to get the axe this season when the Toronto Maple Leafs let him go earlier this week. Carlyle joined Dallas Eakins, Paul MacLean and Peter DeBoer as coaches now looking for work and they might have some company in the near future.
Here are five current NHL coaches that are on the hot seat:
It’s hard to criticize a coach that since 2007 has racked up a 330-180-71 record, won 57 playoff games in seven straight post-season appearances and led his team to a Stanley Cup, but Julien’s time in Boston could be winding down if his team doesn’t turn things around.
“You don’t take this job and go in there and think everything’s okay,” Julien told reporters after his team’s CEO Charlie Jacobs ripped into the club earlier this week. “My job is always under evaluation. I evaluate myself. I evaluate my coaches, I evaluate my players.”
At the midway point of the season, the Bruins are hanging onto the final Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference. If they fail to make the playoffs or struggle down the stretch he may be looking for a new job come the off-season. The fact he was reward with a multi-year contract extension in November might not matter either; Carlyle was given an extension in May and look how that ended up. It is believed that Julien has been on the hot seat in previous seasons, but his Bruins did enough salvage his job.
It will be interesting to see how the Wild react to Yeo’s recent outburst because the manner in which they respond could determine his future with the team. Yeo has been the Wild’s coach since 2011, but it appears he’s in danger of losing his group – frustration doesn’t just boil over like that out of the blue. With the Wild currently on the outside of the playoffs looking in, Yeo is planted firmly on the hot seat.
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The San Jose Sharks are a perennial post-season disappointment, so talk of a potential coaching change is not entirely uncommon in regards to this team. The Sharks are almost always a regular season powerhouse, but that hasn’t been the case this season. When you look at the Sharks roster it’s not one that needs a complete overhaul, so the easiest way for management to shake things up – unless they choose to do something weird with their captaincy again – then a coaching change is the easiest way to send a bold message to the players.
McLellan is 293-144-62 as coach of the Sharks, but has a sub-.500 record in the playoffs. If the Sharks fail to go on a long post-season run, McLellan’s job could be in jeopardy.
Tippett has always been regarded as a quality coach since being named Coyotes bench boss in 2009 and he’s the winningest coach in franchise history. However, he is on pace for his least successful season as a head coach in the NHL. Tippett’s worst campaign to date was 2008-09 with the Dallas Stars where he finished with a 36-35-11 record and was fired in the off-season prior to joining the Coyotes. If the desert dogs miss the post-season for a third straight season under Tippett his time may be up.
You’ve got two of the top six scorers in the NHL and the fifth-ranked power-play yet you’re three games under .500? Something’s not right with the Flyers. They have quite the hill to climb to get back into the playoff hunt and Berube could end up being the scapegoat in Philly if things don’t change. The Flyers have been poor defensively and rather inconsistent this season. A lot of that falls on the coach’s shoulders.
*Coaching and team records as of Jan. 8