Dec 3, 2011; San Jose, CA, USA; San Jose Sharks general manager Doug Wilson honors assistant athletic trainer Wes Howard (not pictured) before the game against the Florida Panthers at HP Pavilion. Florida defeated San Jose 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Jason O. Watson-US PRESSWIRE

Assistant Coach Idol


I’m no Ryan Seacrest, but I’ll give it a shot (along with taking his girlfriend, Julianne Hough) Ahem… THISSSSS IS ASSISTANT COACH IDOL!

Welcome to Assistant Coach Idol, I’m Puckguy Seacrest. Tonight, we look at three of our potential finalists. Our judge, Sharks General Manager Doug Wilson, is still evaluating everything from players, coaches, and hopefully uniform designs from your favorite Blades of Teal Blogger / Produce Clerk / Freelance Graphic Designer. Hockey Night in Canada’s Eliotte Freeman wrote in his “30 Thoughts” column for cbcsports.ca that Todd McLellan will return as head coach, and rumors state that Sharks scout, Bryan Marchment will go behind the bench to join the coaching staff. Is that the only choice?

Many expect an assistant shake up in the Sharks organization, in which, they will attempt to improve the 29th ranked penalty kill in the regular season, and allowed six power play goals which doomed them in their short playoff life this season. Many have suggested that Doug Wilson will look within the organization for an assistant. Marchment, who was known for his tough play and occasional illegal hitting has no official coaching experience, however has been behind the bench on occasion when he visits the Worcester Sharks in his scouting duties. “Mush” could provide NHL playing experience to players who need to find more grit and defense on a team that has shown to struggle offensively.

Staying within the organization, another coach that could go behind the bench is Developmental Coach Mike Ricci. This choice would be very popular by fans and might be a good fit. “Reech” who is arguably the most admired player to ever wear a Pacific Teal sweater, was known for his hard work, determination, dedication of the game. He might be one to easily transition behind the bench.

The darkhorse of the internal choices, could be scout Dirk Graham. Graham is a former assistant coach for the Chicago Blackhawks, and eventually became head coach in 1998-99 but was fired mid season. He also coached the AHL’s Springfield Falcons and failed to make the postseason in the three years at the helm.

Who knows if they’ll be behind the bench? They might be the “eye in the press box” communicating down to another assistant coach. It’s likely, to see Marchment, Ricci, or Graham partnered with a coach with NHL coaching experience… you know, if the team starts poorly and there’s no quality head coach available if Wilson were to relieve McLellan of his coaching duties.

Time will tell, but if there are some coaching changes, it’s best to have changes made before heading to Pittsburgh at the end of June for the NHL Draft. Doug, we wait for your move…

Tags: NHL San Jose Sharks

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