Blackhawks fire 3-time Stanley Cup winning coach Quenneville

Annette Crawford
November 7, 2018

The Chicago Blackhawks fired coach Joel Quenneville on Tuesday.

Colliton, 33, is now the youngest active head coach in the National Hockey League.

Quenneville took over Chicago four games into the 2008-09 season, replacing Denis Savard after the Hall of Famer was let go by former general manager Dale Tallon. "We want to re-win".

Barry Smith was named assistant coach on Colliton's staff, which will not include assistant coaches Kevin Dineen and Ulf Samuelsson. Blackhawks forward Chris Kunitz, defenceman Duncan Keith and goaltenders Corey Crawford and Cam Ward are older than Colliton, and defenceman Brent Seabrook also is 33. Chicago started the season 6-6-3.

"The challenge is to hit the ground running", Colliton said.

"The one thing I loved about Jeremy is the positivity he brings to the rink".

"It was similar to what we were asking him to do in Rockford: Take a young group, walk a fine line and get wins in Rockford, but most important make sure these guys are developing to move up to Chicago", Rockford general manager Mark Bernard said. Prior to joining the Blackhawks, he spent eight seasons as head coach of the St. Louis Blues and three as head coach of the Colorado Avalanche.

Quenneville is the second-winningest head coach in Blackhawks history with a record of 452-249-96 since 2008.

The 60-year-old Quenneville likely will find work very soon. Colliton played 57 career games in the National Hockey League, the last coming during the 2010-11 season. He led the organization to its greatest heights with three championships in six seasons, as the Blackhawks captured the Stanley Cup in 2010, 2013 and 2015.

The Hawks haven't won a playoff series since winning the Stanley Cup in 2015. Win or lose the night before, the players came into the rink next morning knowing it was going to be a positive environment.

"We've had some pretty insane highs and you remember all the good stuff, so it's tough to see a coach and a friend like Joel go", the captain said.

Rockford made it to its first-ever conference finals after sweeping Chicago in the 2018 Division Semifinals and sweeping Manitoba in the Division Finals before losing to Texas. His Blackhawks teams made the playoffs in nine of ten seasons and he stood as the longest tenured head coach in the National Hockey League, having been officially hired by Chicago on October 16, 2008.

However, the team had not made it past the first round of the playoffs since their last title in 2015, and missed the playoffs a year ago for the first time in a decade. But as we look to a future history not yet defined, we believe the change we made today, will provide the Chicago Blackhawks a critical element in achieving our goals of Championships in the future, including this season.

The dismissal turns up the pressure on Bowman, who has made a couple of questionable moves that helped hasten the Blackhawks' decline. However, McDonough said that during this process he did not consider firing Bowman. "I want him to succeed".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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