The Capitals will hire Peter Laviolette as the new head coach to replace Todd Reirden, the team announced on Tuesday. Laviolette was among the three front-runners for the job along with Gerard Gallant and Mike Babcock.
As a head coach, Laviolette has won a Stanley Cup with the Carolina Hurricanes and led two other teams to the Cup Final. His overall career record is 637-425-25-123. He has a reputation as being a tough coach on the players, seemingly fitting the type of coach general manager Brian MacLellan was looking for when he said he wanted someone who could "push some buttons" with the players.
It's a move that makes a lot of sense, especially considering the other two finalists. Laviolette is the same style of coach as Babcock, but comes without the same level of controversy. He also has had the same level of success as a head coach, but with rosters that have not featured as much talent as Babcock's Detroit Red Wings team. Gallant is also seen as more of a players' coach than Laviolette and has never lasted more than three seasons at any of his three stops as a head coach.
Washington will be Laviolette's fifth team as head coach. His deal with the Caps is for three years and will pick up all of the $2.5 million remaining in the final year of his deal with the Nashville Predators.