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Average length of coaching tenure: NHL ranks last among professional leagues
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Being the head coach of a professional sports team in the world of sports is a very difficult position to fill.

And why is that?

Well, because often, as soon as the results aren’t up to scratch, it’s the head coach who loses his job.

However, this tendency is all the more true and fatal in the National Hockey League.

Teams practically change coaches like they change their underwear.

Since the end of the 2022-2023 season, there have already been 19 coaching changes across the NHL.

Peter DeBoer, currently at the helm of the Dallas Stars, had a nice metaphor to sum up the situation.

In short, being a head coach in the NHL is all the more difficult given that management’s patience is very, very thin.

Shayna Goldman proved this in one of her recent articles for The Athletic, in which she charts the average length of head coach tenures across the four professional leagues.

The conclusion is clear: the NHL is dead last.

Indeed, with her first chart, Shayna Goldman demonstrates that NFL, NBA and MLB teams retain their coaches for an average of four years.

The NHL?

Two years.


The difference is glaringly obvious, as we can see that patience with head coaches is very thin in the NHL, and they very often take the blame for the team’s poor performance.

There’s this culture in the NHL that changing coaches will wake players up.

But, if the players aren’t good or don’t work hard enough, aren’t they the ones who should be changed?

Firing the head coach is an easy decision for team management, because it’s easy to blame the man at the helm.

It’s not for nothing that Martin St-Louis (who’s been around for just over two seasons) is already the 6ᵉ coach with the longest active tenure in the NHL.

21 out of 32 active coaches have been at the helm of their team for less than two years.

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In short, it makes you wonder if the other three professional leagues are simply more patient, or hire better coaches.

Because in the NHL, it’s pretty much the same names over and over again.

A real merry-go-round of coaches, this current NHL.

To find out more, here’s Shayna Goldman’s excellent article.

In a gust

– Florida completely dominates the Bruins.

– Images of Slafkovsky at practice today.

– She was sensational in the first game of the series. Game #2 will be one to watch today.

– What Pierre-Olivier Joseph’s next contract will look like.

– Ouch.

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