The fact that Kirk Muller may be leaving the Habs during the off-season is no longer an obscure rumor. Now that Muller has gotten the permission to speak to the other teams regarding potential head-coach jobs, it seems imperative that Montreal starts looking for a replacement. We can all agree that this may not be the easiest task, to replace a player's coach like Muller and there may be some repercussions for the team. Among other potential issues, there were some concerns raised in the media about some players not re-signing with the Habs if Muller is not part of the coaching staff.
We already presented you with a list of alternatives, the names that are being circulated around, in a previous news article. The list contained details on potential candidates such as Larry Robinson and Peter DeBoer. A few other names are also being bounced around in the media and churned through the rumor mills. These include Randy Cunneyworth, the current headcoach of Montreal's AHL affiliate the Hamilton Bulldogs, and the Montreal Junior's head-coach and General Manager, Pascal Vincent.
If Cunneyworth is indeed a candidate for the assistant-coach position with the Habs, it will be interesting to see who takes over the Bulldogs next season, and Pascal Vincent may just be the man. Cunneyworth already has some experience as an assistant coach in the NHL and was part of the Atlanta Thrashers organization between 2008 and 2010.
While Dallas Stars look like a strong possibility for Kirk Muller, the latest news is that Star's GM Joe Nieuwendyk has not confirmed his name or anybody's name as far as the head-coach position is concerned. The New Jersey Devils have also spoken to Muller but may be leaning toward Ken Hitchcock as their head-coach and the Florida Panthers are assumed to be looking at Guy Carbonneau, Kevin Dineen and John Torchetti.