Phil Housley and Dan Muse join Rangers coaching staff

NHL: New York Rangers at Buffalo Sabres
Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers coaching staff is taking shape with the additions of Phil Housley and Dan Muse to the bench.

Although Peter Laviolette or the team have yet to make these hirings official, multiple reports over the last few days indicate these are done deals.

Mollie Walker of the NY Post reported the addition of Muse, while Arthur Staple of The Athletic noted Housley. Sportsnet’s Jeff Marek indicated Michael Peca joining Laviolette earlier in the week.

Phil Housley and Dan Muse join Rangers staff

NHL: Winter Classic-Practice
Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

“I am thrilled to be here as the coach of the New York Rangers,” Laviolette said at his intro presser. “We have a really good team and really good players. My staff and I will work tirelessly to bring a Stanley Cup to New York.”

Let’s take a closer look at his staff.

Phil Housley

Housley, 59, is considered one of the greatest offensive defensemen to have ever played the game. In 1495 career regular-season games, he amassed 338 goals and 894 assists for 1232 points which ranks fourth all-time for blue-liners (Ray Bourque, Paul Coffey, Al MacInnis).

The Hall of Famer was briefly the head coach of the Buffalo Sabres from 2017 to 2019. In those two seasons, his teams failed to make the playoffs while he registered a record of 58-84-22.

Dan Muse

Muse, 40, has limited NHL experience but a vast amount of minor league and international experience. He guided the Chicago Steel to a USHL championship in 2016-17 and has been a head coach with the U.S. National Team where GM Chris Drury got to know him well.

Michael Peca

Peca, 49, played 14 seasons in the NHL split between the Islanders, Buffalo Sabres, Vancouver Canucks, Edmonton Oilers, Toronto Maple Leafs, and Columbus Blue Jackets. During his playing time, he amassed 176 goals and 289 assists for 465 points in 864 regular-season games.

The Toronto native was selected in the second-round by the Canucks in the 1992 Draft and retired after the 2008-2009 season. Afterwards, Peca moved on to coaching, where he’s been an assistant with the AHL’s Rochester Americans in charge of their forwards and power play the last two years.

Putting it all together

Both Housley and Muse worked as assistants for Laviolette in Nashville with the Predators. I would expect Peca to work with the forwards and Housley the defense for the Rangers. Muse is likely to play a similar role to that of Jim Midgley under Gerard Gallant, who was the youngest of his coaches and worked with players individually as the fourth guy on the bench.

Looking ahead, the Rangers coaching staff is pretty loaded with goalie coach Benoit Allaire and skills coach Mark Ciaccio staying on board. It’s unknown if Laviolette’s longtime running mate, Kevin McCarthy will be part of this group in some shape or form. The 65 year-old former NHL defenseman has been with Laviolette at all his previous NHL coaching stops except for the New York Islanders.

Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore

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