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Kirk Muller in the running for an NHL head coaching position

Kirk Muller hasn’t been in Montreal since 2021, but his passage has left its mark and his name continues to circulate around the NHL.

It has to be said that he doesn’t have a bad reputation, and wherever he’s been, players have generally enjoyed working with him. On the other hand, his teams’ failure on the power play remains worrying.

Muller is reportedly in the running for a head coaching position, according to Elliotte Friedman in his 32 Thoughts podcast.

The catch is that Friedman doesn’t know exactly where his services might be in demand.

Certainly, some doors are open for him, but there will be many candidates. Will teams turn to him, or to younger coaches patiently waiting their turn? Time will tell.

Muller has just spent the last two seasons as associate coach in Calgary, where the team failed to perform up to expectations. This situation led to the dismissal of Darryl Sutter.

Muller was notably in charge of the power play, which didn’t produce enough in 2022-2023. With weapons like Nazem Kadri, Jonathan Huberdeau, Dillon Dubé and company, the team needed to produce better. The 19.84% efficiency wasn’t enough.

Muller was also in charge of the power play under Claude Julien, and it wasn’t much better. He was in the CH organization for a second time, from 2016 to 2021. He had previously been head coach of the Carolina Hurricanes, where he didn’t have the success he had hoped for.

Friedman has also heard Brad Shaw’s name floated around the NHL as another possible head-coaching candidate.

Shaw has just completed the 2022-2023 season as associate coach of the Philadelphia Flyers, a difficult role when the head coach’s name is John Tortorella.

In gusto

– Interesting.

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– What a character!

– Not all is rosy.

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