Bob Boughner

Sharks to begin search for Boughner's replacement 'immediately'

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USATI

Sharks to begin search for Boughner's replacement 'immediately'

Now that Bob Boughner has officially been named the head coach in Florida, the Sharks will begin the process of looking for his replacement on Pete DeBoer’s staff.

The Panthers made the announcement on Monday morning, confirming several reports from over the weekend. An assistant coach for the Sharks for the past two seasons, this will be the 46-year-old Boughner’s first head coaching job in the NHL. 

"I want to congratulate Bob as he takes this next step in an already distinguished coaching career, and thank him for the contributions he made to our team and many of our individual players,” coach Pete DeBoer said in a statement. “While we hate to lose him, it's the ultimate compliment to an organization when members of your team are sought out by others.”

General manager Doug Wilson said: "We are extremely happy for Bob and his family. This is a terrific opportunity for Bob to become a head coach in the National Hockey League and one that he deserves. We will immediately start the process of reviewing candidates to add to our coaching staff in San Jose."

The Sharks will surely be looking for a defensive-minded coach, as Boughner oversaw the team’s blue line and its penalty killers. Former director of player personnel Larry Robinson, whose contract expired, also worked with the team’s defensemen.

 

Report: Boughner to leave Sharks, become Panthers head coach

Report: Boughner to leave Sharks, become Panthers head coach

It appears that the Sharks will have an opening on their coaching staff very shortly.

According to TSN’s Bob McKenzine, the Florida Panthers will hire Sharks assistant coach Bob Boughner to be their new head coach, “barring any last minute hiccups.”

It was revealed in early May that the Panthers had received permission from the Sharks to interview Boughner for the position. The Buffalo Sabres were also reportedly interested in Boughner, who has been as assistant coach under Pete DeBoer in San Jose for the past two seasons.

The job will be Boughner’s first head coaching job in the NHL, starting in the same place that DeBoer did from 2008-09 through 2010-11.

Boughner, who was up for the Colorado Avalanche job last summer before they eventually chose Jared Bednar, said before the start of the 2016-17 season that he would like to become an NHL head coach at some point.

“I think that’s the end game to be a head coach in this league,” Boughner said last September.

The 46-year-old former NHL defenseman was primarily in charge of the Sharks’ defense and penalty kill. The Sharks surrendered 2.52 goals-per game in 2015-16 (10th in the NHL) and 2.44 goals-per game in 2017-18 (fifth in the NHL). Their penalty kill was 21st in the NHL in Boughner’s first season (80.5 percent), and 18th this past year (80.7 percent).

Norris Trophy favorite Brent Burns offen credited Boughner for helping him transition back to the blue line and become the dominant all-around player he is now.

Boughner will be taking over a Florida team that missed the playoffs this season, finishing sixth in the Atlantic Division (35-36-11, 81 points). The Panthers fired Gerard Gallant on Nov. 28, replacing him with interim coach and then-general manager Tom Rowe. Since the conclusion of the season, Dale Tallon has resumed general manager duties while Rowe has taken on an advisory role.

Prior to joining the Sharks, Boughner was the head coach of the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires for eight seasons, leading them to Memorial Cup championships in 2009 and 2010. He was named as the OHL/CHL coach of the year in 2008 and 2009, and was an assistant coach with the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2010-11. Boughner played 630 games over 10 NHL seasons as a defenseman with the Sabres, Predators, Penguins, Flames, Hurricanes and Avalanche.

Boughner would become the third active Sharks assistant coach to leave the team to take over the head coaching job of another club (Wayne Cashman, Flyers, 1997; Todd Richards, Minnesota, 2009).

The Sharks also lost director of player personnel Larry Robinson this offseason, as Robinson's contract was not renewed. Like Boughner, the legendary Hall of Fame defenseman also worked with the organization's blueliners.

Report: Sharks assistant Boughner a candidate for Florida vacancy

Report: Sharks assistant Boughner a candidate for Florida vacancy

Editor's Note: The above video is from Oct. 18, 2016.

Sharks assistant Bob Boughner is once again a candidate for an NHL head coaching job.

According to TSN’s Pierre Lebrun, the Panthers have received permission from the Sharks to talk to Boughner about their head coaching vacancy. Last summer, Boughner was a candidate for the Colorado Avalanche’s head coaching job after Patrick Roy’s abrupt resignation. The job eventually went to Jared Bednar.

Boughner told NBC Sports California last September that he would still like to become an NHL head coach at some point.

“I think so. I think it’s important to get experience in the league first, which I have in Columbus and [in 2015-16] here,” he said. “There’s nothing wrong with me coming back and getting even more experience. There’s something to learn every day in this league. 

“I think that’s the end game, to be a head coach in this league. … At the end of the day, I think that’s the end game, for sure.”

Boughner, 46, is primarily in charge of the Sharks’ defense and penalty kill. Defenseman Brent Burns, the likely Norris Trophy winner, has often credited Boughner for helping him transition back to the blue line after a season-and-a-half as a forward.

Prior to joining the Sharks, Boughner was the head coach of the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires for eight seasons, leading them to Memorial Cup championships in 2009 and 2010. He was named as the OHL/CHL coach of the year in 2008 and 2009, and was an assistant coach with the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2010-11.

Boughner played 630 games over 10 NHL seasons as a defenseman with the Sabres, Predators, Penguins, Flames, Hurricanes and Avalanche, wrapping up his career in Colorado for the final two seasons in 2003-04 and 2005-06.

The Sharks were fifth in the NHL in goals-against per game in 2016-17 (2.44), and had the league’s 18th-ranked penalty kill (80.7 percent).