Brent Sutter and Flames part ways


Today, Brent Sutter’s tenure behind the Flames bench comes to an end.

After three consecutive years of playoff-less hockey, the Flames organization decided to go in a new direction.

This from the news release:

“Brent Sutter and I met and discussed a number of issues regarding the hockey team and the future,” Flames general manager Jay Feaster said in a news release. “Brent and I explored many options and ultimately determined that it is best to proceed in different directions.”

So, the Flames will have a NEW head coach next season and a new assistant coach as Dave Lowry was also asked not to return.

In three seasons, Sutter compiled a record 118-90-38 and finished 10th twice and 9th this season, finishing five points back of the Los Angeles Kings.

The writing was on the wall for Sutter (just as I said a week ago here) as his contract was expiring and the team is in major need of a shake-up – both on the ice and in the front office/behind the bench.

This ends a run of a decade worth of having a Sutter either behind the bench or in the front office. The end of an era you might say, despite how different Darryl and Brent seemt to be. 

So now the question becomes, who will be the new head coach of the Calgary Flames?  My thinking has always been that Feaster wants his own guy in their as much as he has always said praised Brent fro being a great coach.

So who are HIS guys is the question?

Immediately Troy Ward becomes a strong candidate to take over as teams seem to love promoting their AHL coach to their big clubs. The Abbotsford Heat Head Coach has led the Heat to 4th in the AHL’s Western conference with a record of 40-26-3-5 and currently is unbeaten in 7 seven games.  Ward’s downfall might be his lack of experience as this in only his first year as a head coach at the AHL level, having been an assistant in prior years for the Houston Aeros. He did however hold down an Assistant job with the Pittsburgh Penguins in the late 90’s.  

Looking at some other possible candidates currently coaching in the AHL or not coaching currently, the list includes:

Craig MacTavish – coaching the Chicago Wolves, Vancouver’s farm team. After beign let go by the Oilers following the 2009 season, Mac-T took two seasons off and finally got back into the game this past season.  Mac-T’s resume isn’t great having been to the playoffs only three times in 8 years as a head coach, but then again he was coaching the Oilers. It might not be the worst fit in the entire world.

Marc Crawford – Current TSN talking head and former head coach of the Dallas Stars, Vancouver Canucks and Colorado Avalanche. I would absolutely hate to see him as head coach of the Flames. I just put him on here because of his name.

Bob Hartley - former coach of the Colorado Avalanche and Atlanta Thrashers. Hasn’t coached since 2007. Now a commentator for RDS.

I honestly have no idea who is going to take over for Sutter but I do know that it will be a guy Feaster knows and is very comfortable with.

The time to really judge what Feaster can do as a GM starts now.


Who do you think would be a good fit as the Calgary flames bench boss? Respond below. Start the discussion.


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NickSymon's picture

My head seriously hurts, this organization is never going to change. If King stays, so does Iginla and Kiprusoff. Hartley;s name was brought up in Feaster's media availability, so that's my guess.
Where's the nearest wall so I can hit my head repeatedly on it.