After 10 seasons and 3 Stanley Cups, the Chicago Blackhawks have fired head coach Joel Quenneville sending shock waves across the hockey world. He was fired along with his assistants Kevin Dineen and Ulf Samuelsson.
“This is certainly a very difficult decision. But I believe it is in the best interests of the Blackhawks organization,” GM Stan Bowman said in a statement. “We need to maximize each and every opportunity with our playoff goals in mind and create continued growth and development throughout our roster at the same time.
“After much deliberation the last several days, with great respect to what Joel has meant to the Blackhawks, we knew we had to make a change.”
Jeremy Colliton, formerly the head coach of the AHL’s Rockford IceHogs, has been named his replacement, making him the youngest coach in the NHL.
After stints in St. Louis (eight seasons) and Colorado (three seasons), this was Quenneville’s 11th season as the Blackhawks head coach. He won three Stanley Cups in Chicago, but failed to make the playoffs last season.
Quenneville signed a three-year extension with the Blackhawks in 2016 and is owed the remainder of this year’s salary as well as $6 million for next season. How long he remains unemployed will be exactly how long he wants to.