LAS VEGAS -- The Vegas Golden Knights have hired Gerard Gallant as the first coach of the NHL expansion team.
General manager George McPhee announced the move Thursday.
Gallant helped revive the Florida Panthers, leading them to a first-place finish in the Atlantic Division last season and becoming a coach-of-the-year finalist. He was let go last November after just 22 games as the team stumbled to a slow start.
Gallant was a standout left wing as a player, primarily for the Detroit Red Wings -- scoring at least 34 goals in four straight seasons from 1986 through 1990 and finishing his NHL career with 211 goals in 615 games. He later was a head coach in Columbus and an assistant in Montreal, among other stops.
The franchise will get its first 30 players through the expansion draft in June. The Golden Knights begin play next season (see full story).
Stars bring back Hitchcock as head coach
DALLAS -- Ken Hitchcock is back as coach of the Dallas Stars, more than 15 years after being fired by the team he took to its only Stanley Cup championship.
Hitchcock was re-introduced in Dallas on Thursday, less than a week after the Stars ended their season without making the playoffs.
Lindy Ruff's four-year contract expired at the end of the season and wasn't extended.
When Dallas fired Hitchcock in January 2002, he had won 277 of his 503 games over parts of seven seasons in his first NHL head-coaching job. He led the Stars to five straight division titles, with consecutive Western Conference championships in 1999 and 2000. They won the Stanley Cup in 1999 and went again in 2000, the only times Hitchcock or the Stars have played in the Stanley Cup Final.
The 65-year-old Hitchcock had since coached the Philadelphia Flyers, Columbus Blue Jackets and St. Louis. The Blues abruptly fired Hitchcock on Feb. 1, cutting short what was already going to be his last season with the Blues (see full story).
Fleury to remain in net for Penguins in Game 2
PITTSBURGH -- Marc-Andre Fleury will remain in net for the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 2 of their playoff series against Columbus while Matt Murray deals with a lower-body injury.
Murray was scheduled to start Game 1 but left after suffering a lower-body injury in warm-ups. Fleury came on and made 31 saves as the Penguins cruised to a 3-1 victory to take a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven series.
Penguins coach Mike Sullivan offered no public update of Murray's status on Thursday, saying only there's no timetable for Murray's return.
Murray helped Pittsburgh to the franchise's fourth Stanley Cup as a rookie last spring and had taken over the No. 1 spot from Fleury this season.
Fleury's appearance on Friday will be his 102nd in the playoffs, a franchise record for a goaltender.