Fischler's Top 10 Candidates to Replace Low

Stan Fischler is a hockey analyst and is a commentator during New Jersey Devils intermissions on Fox Sports, sometimes on MSG the channel. Fischler also wrote books and has tons of hockey history knowledge and knows tons about many things in the NHL. Here he talks about the 10 top candidates to coach the New York Rangers next season. Source: www.msgnetwork.com

Stan Fischler
Top 10 candidates to replace Low
April 15, 2002

Who is available to succeed Ron Low behind the New York Rangers’ bench? Consider these candidates:

1. MARK MESSIER: The captain, as a senior, SENIOR, citizen should pack it in once and for all. He’s savvy, trusted by Glen Sather and respected by players. Mess also has been at the GM’s side long enough to know what Slats wants.

2. PAT BURNS: The mustachioed one is a proven commodity who could easily handle the Manhattan market and its media. He’s got the disciplinarian touch and wit to go with it. Sather should like that, as well as the fact that he’s a marquee name.

3. TED NOLAN: Of all the general managers, Sather is THE one who loves reclamation projects. Nolan almost had the Islanders’ job last year and missed out by a Peter Laviolette. Let’s not forget that Nolan WON in Buffalo and might still be there were it not for Dom Hasek and John Muckler.

4. BRYAN TROTTIER: If you get past the “Islanders” thing, there’s no question that Trots has the experience — Stanley Cup-winner as player and assistant coach — and charisma. He knows the area and the area certainly knows him. He’s paid his dues as an assistant and is ready for THE job. Is Sather ready for him?

5. DAVE LEWIS: Ask anyone close to the Red Wings and they’ll tell you that Scott Bowman is the figurehead but Dave Lewis is the real coach behind Detroit’s successful sextet. The ex-Islander and King is a solid hockey man, good thinker, affable and known enough in these parts not to be dismissed out of hand. He could be a real sleeper!

6. KEN HITCHCOCK: He’s not wearing a Stanley Cup ring for nothing. Hitch is brainy, tough, adjustable and smart enough with the media to handle the Big Apple press. Whether or not he’s a Sather type is debatable. I’d take him in a heartbeat.

7. JOHN PADDOCK: Promoting a coach from within the system is not the worst idea in the world. Certainly, Paddock has won raves in Hartford and also has a sufficient NHL experience to get a good, hard look. Let’s face it, he would have been a better choice than Ron Low when the latter got the job.

8. HERB BROOKS: The 1980 and 2002 Olympic hero is as smart as they come and also has a Ranger tattooed on his back. He wants to return to The Show, and what better place than Seventh Avenue, from whence he once came? But Brooks and Sather as a tandem might not be the best of chemistry.

9. JOEL QUENNEVILLE: If the Blues go playoff-bye-bye in a hurry, they’ll no doubt bounce the former NHL defenseman. And wouldn’t he be a terrific catch? I think so, and I wouldn’t doubt that Sather would as well.

10. GLEN SATHER: Remember the tune, “We Did It Before And We Can Do It Again?” I do and perhaps Slats does as well. Why not? There’ve been GM-coaches before. Punch Imlach won three straight Stanley Cups (1962, 1963, 1964) in that role and got yet another in 1967. Yes, it can be done, and Sather can do it. Big question: would he want to? If I’m a Rangers fan, I’d want him behind the bench more than anyone!

LONGER THAN LONG SHOTS:

KEVIN LOWE: If Sather can talk him out of managing in Edmonton.

BUTCH GORING: If Sather thinks he really can coach.

AL ARBOUR or DENIS POTVIN: Just wanted to get a laugh!


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