Martin to stay in Florida
Jacques Martin will not return as coach of the Florida Panthers next season, although it appears he will continue in his role as general manager of the team, The Miami Herald has learned.Martin's running out of time in Florida, but it looks like he'll get at least one more season in the captain's chair.
On Thursday night, team owner Alan Cohen told a group of season ticket-holders meeting at BankAtlantic Center that Florida would not have a dual coach/general manager setup, as it has for the past two seasons.
The Panthers are improving personnel wise, slowly but surely, and a big part of the reason they missed the playoffs was a league-leading head count in the injury department. Still, they have to rank at the moment as the NHL's most hapless franchise, without a playoff appearance since 1999-2000 and with only three in the team's 15-year existence.
It'll be interesting to see who takes over behind the bench. They need a miracle worker at this point.
UPDATE The press release on this one is very strange, one that gives the impression Martin may leave:
The Florida Panthers announced today that they will split the general manager and head coach positions for the upcoming 2008-09 season. Jacques Martin has been offered to remain with the organization as the team’s general manager. Once the general manger position is confirmed, the Florida Panthers will begin the process to hire a new coach.Dys-func-tion-al.
“Over the past few days both Jacques and I have spent significant time together discussing what is in the best interest of this franchise,” said Florida Panthers Owner/Chief Executive Officer Alan Cohen. “It is now up to Jacques to decide if he wants to remain with the club as our general manager, where he would continue to play a vital role in helping to ensure the future success of our organization.”
An announcement on Martin’s future with the organization is expected next week.