Peter Laviolette seen as favorite for Rangers head coach job: Report

Peter Laviolette to Rangers
Could the Rangers be interested in Peter Laviolette?
Wikimedia Commons

The New York Rangers haven’t made a final decision regarding their head coach, but a favorite seems to have emerged.

According to a report by Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet, New York seems to be the destination for former Washington Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette.

“I think a lot of people are beginning to lean Peter Laviolette on this one, I think if it is Peter Laviolette we’re going to find out next week” Friedman expanded. 

Laviolette has over 20 years of head coach experience and won a Stanley Cup with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2006. He’s also led the Nashville Predators and Philadelphia Flyers to the Cup Final throughout his career. The Norwood native has recorded a career record of 752-503-25 and is one of the more experienced veteran coaches available during this coaching carousel. 

Experience doesn’t always mean success is sure to follow though. In his latest stop with the Capitals, Laviolette did not win a playoff series in three years while the aging roster finished below .500 for the first time since the 2006 season. It was also the first time they did not qualify for the postseason since 2013. 

Even after he was let go from Washington, Laviolette remained focused on securing a new job with an NHL team

Outside of just his experience with talented clubs, there are other questions Laviolette will have to answer should he take the Rangers job. With a collection of young, but unproven talent, it will be up to the 58-year-old to get the most out of them outside of just winning over the veterans in the locker room. Add in a championship mandate for a team that did not get out of the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and New York has plenty of expectations for any coach that is to be hired. 

No official announcement has been currently made in regards to the head coaching position, and general manager Chris Drury has interviewed a wide variety of candidates ranging from experienced to first-time bench leaders. 

But as the calendar shifts to June and free agency right around the corner, the Rangers appear to see one of the most celebrated veteran coaches as the best overall candidate for the job.

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