Sports and sports fans love a good redemption story, even if the story is uneasy at first. For the Columbus Blue Jackets who are searching for the organization’s next head coach the team has been tight lipped thus far on just who is on the list and who they have and have not spoken to. A few name have been released, associate coach Pascal Vincent who joined Columbus in 2021, former Washington Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette, and former Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Mike Babcock are said to have interviewed and/or talked to the Blue Jackets front office. One name not mentioned but perhaps should be is former Florida Panthers head coach Joel Quenneville.
Of the names mentioned, Pascal Vincent is the least likely to ruffle any feathers of emotion. Peter Laviolette is said to be a demanding coach along the lines of former Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella. Mike Babcock does not sit well for many as it has been well documented that Babcock has faced accusations of mistreatment of players.
The real question mark is Joel Quenneville who would qualify as a redemption story but is at the mercy of NHL commissioner Gary Bettman. Quenneville, while coach of the Chicago Blackhawks was accused of a sexual abuse coverup. The allegations forced Quenneville to step down as coach of the Florida Panthers and he went before Bettman to discuss his involvement and must meet with the commissioner once again before he would be allowed to coach.
While it is unclear exactly who the Blue Jackets have and are talking to it seems a bit of a stretch that the organization would hire either Babcock or Quenneville. Both would be hard sells for both players and fans. Both coaches have won big in the NHL but that alone can not be reason to hire them.
The Columbus Blue Jackets front office is taking the right approach. The organization must get the hire right. With young players such as Kent Johnson, Kirill Marchenko and others any new coach is going to need to have developmental skills as well as managing veterans. This is a bit tricky to get right but a balanced coach is important to the now and future of the Blue Jackets.
No matter if the Detroit Lions are on target or arriving a year early in the organizations rebuild, the 2022-’23 Lions have shown fight and the team is on the cusp of being a pretty good football team. As for the playoffs, a couple key things have to go right one in a stadium the Lions rarely play well, the other is hoping another team can knock off the team currently in the final playoff spot.
The Detroit Lions head to a place that has been nothing short of a house of horrors for the team on Sunday, Lambeau Field to take on the Green Bay Packers. Of course a possible playoff spot would hang in the balance an Lambeau. Yet, this is a golden opportunity for the Lions to end the SOL (same old Lions) once and for all.
Detroit Lions head coach Dan Campbell has stated this is the new Lions, players have echoed the coach. Even if the Lions fall on Sunday, the team has taken a big step forward and show the promise of being a very good, competitive team as soon as next season.
A win against the Packers alone will not get Detroit into the NFL Playoffs. The team needs the Los Angeles Rams to beat the Seattle Seahawks to get in. Ironically enough, the Lions hold the Rams first round draft pick which is set to be #6 overall and could be higher, if Seattle beats the Rams.
For the young Detroit Lions no matter the outcome, this season has been one that the future foundation will hang on. Starting the season 1-6 to then get red hot was a great turnaround. The fact that the Lions are even close to being a possible playoff team is testament to the work GM Brad Holmes, has done.
Embed from Getty Images After his worse season Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford will have a new position coach. Gone is George Godsey who over saw Stafford’s bad season and enter Sean Ryan who will be tasked with getting the Detroit signal caller back on track.
The good news for Lions coach Matt Patricia is that Sean Ryan comes from the Houston Texans. While there Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson took off. So there is some hope in the hire.
Hope that Ryan can work his magic and help Stafford regain his Pro-Bowl form. While it is not known why Stafford and Godsey did not click perhaps they did not see eye to eye. But that is hindsight now. Godsey is leaving for a coaching job with the Miami Dolphins.
Ryan, is known around the NFL as a fundamental coach. That is the reason Deshaun Watson excelled. He was not asked to do to much while Ryan tailored to his strengths.
Matthew Stafford did not have it so good. A new coaching staff brought a new system. Offensive coordinator Jim Bob Cooter was let go the after the regular season ended. Godsey was thought to be a candidate to replace him. Instead Patricia has chosen to move on and start fresh.
Time will tell if that is a good move. One thing is for sure the Detroit Lions are fortunate to land a coach like Sean Ryan. It can do nothing but help. With Darrell Bevell calling the offensive plays. Lions fans can hope coordinator and position coach are on the same page and can get the maximum out of their quarterback.
On a side not Detroit Lions running backs coach David Walker has stepped down to spend more time with his family. So Patricia will have to fill that vacancy. Although it is not as pressing and the coach could possibly already be on the coaching staff.
Embed from Getty Images In the good old days owner brought in a new general manager and allowed them to hire the coach they wanted. Tom Gores owner of the Detroit Pistons, does not seem to want that approach.
It seems as if the Pistons have narrowed the head coaching position to Dwane Casey, (formerly of the Toronto Raptor) and Ime Udoka, (assistant coach with the San Antonio Spurs.)
Dwane Casey, has been called a very good communicator with players. While Ime Udoka, is an up and coming coach from the great Gregg Popovich tree. It seems both would be solid choices.
There is one small detail not really being talked about. The Detroit Pistons, still need a general manager. That is usually how it works. Almost never is a head coach hired before the general manager.
There could be a few reasons Gores, has not hired one as of yet. Perhaps he simply has not found his guy. Or perhaps he is waiting for a member of the Cleveland Cavilers or Golden State Warriors to speak with after the 2018 NBA Finals.
The general manager, is the person who brings in his guy. That way it is all on his shoulders in wins and in losses. Both Casey and Udoka are hot names this off season.
It is possible that Tom Gores, thought one of the coaches would be snatched up and he would like to secure one of them. That would mean the person brought in as general manager would have to agree to the coach they had no part of hiring.
It should be interesting to see how this plays out in the coming days and possibly weeks. I would think there will be a new person calling the shots before the 2018 NBA draft.