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Gerard Gallant Fired By The Florida Panthers

from Harvey Fialkov of the Sun Sentinel at Miami Herald,

The Florida Panthers fired coach Gerard Gallant on Sunday night and general manager Tom Rowe will assume the coaching duties, according to a source.

The move was made Sunday night after the Panthers' 3-2 loss at Carolina. The Panthers fell to 11-10-1 through 22 games, good for only 10th in the Eastern Conference, but just two points out of a wild-card playoff berth.

Gallant confirmed via text that he and longtime friend and assistant coach Mike Kelly had been fired.

Phone calls to Rowe, assistant co-general manager Steve Werier and president of hockey operations Dale Tallon haven't been returned. Bill Torrey, the Panthers special advisor to Rowe and alternate governor, was unaware of the changes as he was tending to a personal matter.


from Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet,

Florida locked up a ton of its core. Aleksander Barkov, Aaron Ekblad, Reilly Smith, Trocheck and Huberdeau signed long-term deals. Can’t imagine anyone had a problem with that. This group will grow together and be very strong. Its other changes definitely added skill — Jonathan Marchessault looks to be a particularly good call — but took away the edge.

Gerard Gallant would never admit it (at least not before Sunday), but he hated seeing Erik Gudbranson traded. In a cap world, someone had to go. Losing him and Willie Mitchell changed the complexion of the blue line. Gallant valued Gudbranson’s game, how hard he could make it on opposing forwards. But Florida’s front office values a different kind of defender, and with one season remaining until his free agency, they weren’t going to ante up for Gudbranson’s skillset.

That, as much as anything else, is why Gallant (and close friend Mike Kelly) are no longer on the Florida bench. There was plenty of anger in the NHL community over the dismissal. There were a lot of surprised and angry texts from people I rarely hear from. Gallant righted a wayward ship and won a franchise-record 47 games last season, getting them to the playoffs for the second time in 15 years.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: gerard+gallant


Paul's avatar

Frank Seravalli of TSN,

His run under the Panthers’ new analytics-based regime lasted just 22 games.

Gallant became the NHL’s first coaching casualty of the season when he was fired on Sunday night in rather bizarre fashion. Coaching changes happen all the time, but rarely so publicly, with Gallant awaiting his own transportation with reporters and cameras gathering around him while the Panthers left for Chicago.

“I was let go,” Gallant told reporters.

Panthers GM Tom Rowe will reportedly take over as interim head coach - the team’s fourth head coach since 2013-14. Rowe, 60, has never been an NHL head coach.

The Panthers landed in Chicago before midnight on Sunday but did not make any comment on the changes. Assistant coach Mike Kelly was also fired.


Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/28/16 at 07:48 AM ET

Paul's avatar

In mid-October 2016…

Greg Cote of the Miami Herald,

“Our commitment is to give back more than we took,” said Viola, 60, Brooklyn-raised founder of Virtu Financial, which has led to his personal worth estimated at $2.2 billion. “This is a new era for the Florida Panthers, with new uniforms and new faces on the ice. But there’s only one mission: To win the Stanley Cup. It’s unfinished business.”


Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/28/16 at 08:42 AM ET

Primis's avatar

If they believe the roster is good enough to win a Cup…. good luck with that.  They’re not.  I’m not sure they’re good enough anyone could expect them to win a single playoff series.

Posted by Primis on 11/28/16 at 09:27 AM ET

Paul's avatar

Bob McKenzie tweet,

FLA GM Tom Rowe is “interim head coach” and interim in this case is apparently defined as the balance of this 2106-17 season.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/28/16 at 09:54 AM ET


I expected them to be one of the better teams in the east this year, and I know that their record isn’t very good, but I’m still pretty shocked by this.  I really thought they’d give him more time to get this thing turned around.

Posted by Wise1 on 11/28/16 at 10:02 AM ET

topshelf14's avatar

They’re definitely a playoff team. And have the potential to compete for the Cup. They have an elite dman in Ekblad. A star center in Barkov and star wingers to compliment.

Posted by topshelf14 from Detroit, MI on 11/28/16 at 10:10 AM ET


By all accounts over the years “Spuddy….his nickname being from PEI” was well liked.  Here is a guy whose owner has his hands all over this franchise.  Tallon gets moved up and out of the equation.  Bill Torrey doesn’t even know this was happening.  This is a team whose owner has a huge ego and doesn’t have enough sense to leave his hands off of a team that was on the rise.  In Detroit we have been very lucky to have an owner who lets his people do their job and not interfere.  I feel sorry for the long suffering fans of S. Florida…your misery is going to continue.

Posted by Wisconsindale on 11/28/16 at 10:42 AM ET

Red Winger's avatar

FLA GM Tom Rowe is “interim head coach” and interim in this case is apparently defined as the balance of this 2106-17 season.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/28/16 at 08:54 AM ET

Damn, these contract are getting out of hand!


Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie, MI on 11/28/16 at 11:07 AM ET

duhduhduh's avatar

Any room for him in the Wings org?

Posted by duhduhduh on 11/28/16 at 12:07 PM ET

Paul's avatar

MS, you have to think he would be a prime candidate for the Vegas job.  He can afford to wait around for an offer he likes.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/28/16 at 12:09 PM ET


What a dysfunctional mess they’ve created. They actually weren’t doing too badly, considering injuries to Huberdeau, Bugstad and others up to now. And if their goal is to win the cup this year, Tom Rowe’s really must have an inflated sense of his coaching abilities, he’s never been a frontrunner for an NHL head coach job in any discussion I’ve heard. Feel sorry for the players.

Posted by Moose Moss on 11/28/16 at 12:11 PM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

Gallant replacing Blashill after the All-Star break? Hmmmmm….

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 11/28/16 at 01:58 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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