Kukla's Korner

The Puck Stops Here

Early Coach Of The Year

I have been picking leaders for the various NHL awards.  The last award that I am interested in but have not commented upon is the Adams Trophy for coach of the year.  It is difficult to decouple a strong coaching job from an improving you team or merely a lucky run.  The voters far too often give coach of the year to the coach of the most improved team.  One problem with that method is longstanding coaches rarely are considered for the award because there is no reason their team should improve as a result of their coaching.  After all they have the same coaching they had last year and the year before.

I think the top coach in the NHL is the only coach in the history of his franchise.  I think the coach of the year is Barry Trotz in Nashville.  He has his team in fourth place in the West Conference despite a lack of any top scorers.  Colin Wilson and Martin Erat lead the team with nine points each.  On defence they lost Ryan Suter to free agency, yet they have the best goals against in the league. 

Nashville has had a strong defensive system for years regardless of their personnel.  Trotz is responsible for this.  It helps that they have talented Shea Weber as a lynchpin on their defence but he is not off to a great start and it isn't affecting the team in the standings.

No team owes as much of their success to coaching as the Nashville Predators do and that is why Barry Trotz is my pick for the coach of the year.

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Comments

w2j2's avatar

Yes!
Trotz has been the glue that held that team together since day 1, and a very competitive team they have been.
He is long overdue for this recognition.

Posted by w2j2 on 02/16/13 at 02:17 PM ET

Avatar

Yes Trotz has been the most deserving as coach of the year for several years. My guess is Quenneville is the front runner this year.

Posted by timbits on 02/16/13 at 04:34 PM ET

PuckStopsHere's avatar

Quenneville is coach of the most improved team - but I don’t think the improvement is coaching related for the most part.

Posted by PuckStopsHere on 02/16/13 at 06:37 PM ET

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imageThe Puck Stops Here was founded during the 2004/05 lockout as a place to rant about hockey. The original site contains over 1000 posts, some of which were also published on FoxSports.com.

Who am I? A diehard hockey fan.

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