Nonis didn’t want Carlyle as coach

When the club was looking for a coach to replace Ron Wilson in the grim days when last season transformed itself into a lost season, NHL sources say Nonis went to bat for Dallas Eakins, then and now the coach of the AHL Marlies. Nonis and other front-office executives were of the belief that Eakins is everything a modern-era coach should be; progressive but hard-nosed, communicative with players but never friends with them. Burke, of course, insisted on his old friend Randy Carlyle.

And though Carlyle certainly deserves a chance to prove himself in the coming 48-game season, the early returns on his tenure — six wins in 18 games after taking over for Wilson in March — suggest the old-school taskmaster may not be the best fit for one of the NHL’s youngest collections of athletes.–nonis-knows-his-way-around-leafs-gm-role-feschuk