Official: Canucks fire head coach Vigneault, assistants Bowness and Brown
We asked yesterday about the fate of Alain Vigneault, and found out today -- the Vancouver Canucks have dismissed Vigneault, along with assistants Rick Bowness and Newell Brown.
“Alain, Rick and Newell worked tirelessly to lead this team to great on-ice success,” Canucks GM Mike Gillis said in a statement. “I am personally grateful to each of them and their families for their commitment to the Canucks and the city of Vancouver and wish them continued success in future.”
TVA’s Louis Jean reports Gillis met with ownership before breaking the news to the three.
The move marks a massive changing of the guard in Vancouver, as nearly the entire coaching staff has been terminated. Jean reports both assistant coach (video) Daryl Williams and goaltending coach Roland Melanson “are safe for now,” and that it will be up to the new coaching staff to decide if they’re retained.
Vigneault was the 16th head coach in Canucks history and the most successful in franchise history.
Since taking over in June 2006, he led the Canucks to two Presidents’ Trophies, a Stanley Cup finals appearance, multiple Northwest Division titles and six postseason berths.
Vigneault may be the winningest coach in Canucks history -- with 313 regular season victories -- and he may have taken Vancouver to Game 7 of the 2011 Stanley Cup finals; however, two straight first-round playoff exits were, in the words of Canucks GM Mike Gillis, “unacceptable.”
Should be noted that Vigneault has two years remaining on his current coaching contract, according to CBC’s Elliotte Friedman.
As for Vigneault’s assistants...
Bowness joined the team the same season as Vigneault -- 2006-07 -- and was primarily responsible for running the team’s defense.
Brown joined the team in 2010 after five seasons with the Anaheim Ducks. He was in charge of in Vancouver’s beleaguered power-play, one that finished 22nd in the NHL this year with a 15.9 percent success rate.