This morning, I wrote that a decision on David Quinn was expected to come today. Early this afternoon, top hockey insider Elliotte Friedman said that a decision isn’t likely to come today but this week.
David Quinn decision coming
The Rangers did not make head coach David Quinn available to the media. Take that as you will, because he could’ve been involved in the player exit meetings or had concluded his own with Chris Drury. The third year coach’s fate is now in the new President and GM’s hands.
What we did learn from the players that were made available was that Quinn as a teacher and groomer of young talent was a hit. “From day one they just harped on me being a complete player,” Team MVP Adam Fox said. “They knew I could defend. They helped me elevate my game.” The Blueshirts first overall pick, Alexis Lafrenière lauded his Quinn’s guidance and support this past season. “He helped me a lot,” the 19 year-old rookie explained.
Then the veterans came to the microphone and had similar praise but no real answers as to his future. “I really don’t know anything,” Ryan Strome replied when asked. However, the most important and telling person to speak on the Rangers’ bench boss was Mika Zibanejad. “I think over the last 3 years, in the beginning you’re trying to figure each other out,” he explained. “It’s been good, it’s been good with the whole coaching staff.” He also stressed this was a different kind of year with so much happening.
When asked if he would like to see Quinn back next season Mika dodged the question. Sometimes, it’s the answer the player doesn’t give that are the most telling. A non-response could be viewed as potential foreshadowing of what may come.
Chris Drury will have a large field to choose from for support
Chris Drury has already said that he is looking to fill positions in both Hartford and New York. According to Friedman that won’t be a problem.
Chris Drury is pretty popular. Not sure what he’s going to do with his front office, but there’s a lot of interest in working for him, and, by extension, the Rangers.31 Thoughts
One candidate is NHL Network analyst Kevin Weekes who is one of the brightest minds in the game today. He has been sought for interviews by teams like the New Jersey Devils and Pittsburgh Penguins. Now there’s some talk that he could land with old teammate, Chris Drury in New York.
Erik Duatschek brought up the subject in a recent article on The Athletic. He writes:
I would look at Kevin Weekes for a lot of reasons beginning with the fact that Weekes has a lot of the same background, career path and people skills that made Davidson so effective. Davidson played goal in the NHL, eventually moved into the broadcast booth once his playing career ended and then got his first front office position in St. Louis… Like Davidson, Weekes also has great charisma — an important asset nowadays in any organizational leader. Weekes was in the running for the job in Pittsburgh that eventually fell to Burke. Plus he played for both the Rangers and Devils at the end of his career.
Credit where it is due, this is a fantastic idea from Duhatschek. Although he believes Weekes would be a fit as President, I think he’d be more influential to the team’s success as an assistant GM for now. If Drury were to bring in Weekes, it would be the joining of two of the brightest minds in the game today.
Players sad to see John Tortorella go
John Tortorella is one potential coaching candidate if Quinn is let go. Read what his players had to say here.