Friday, April 11, 2008

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.

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.
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.

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.

“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.



At 9:58 a.m., April 11, 2008, Blogger FAUX RUMORS said...

1) Have to disagree with your 'need a miracle worker' assessment. We believe that with a good/better coach and admittedly fewer injuries the Cats will be back into the post season
2) On paper they should have been better than they were the past 2 years.

At 12:19 p.m., April 11, 2008, Blogger Adam C said...

Nikos Kypreos is on the radio right now, blaming Florida's problems on insufficient ice time for Wade Belak...

At 12:32 p.m., April 11, 2008, Blogger Dennis Prouse said...

Hiring a coach to work under a lame duck GM - that might be a tough challenge. Jacques Martin won't want to hire anyone who might have designs on the GM's job, but of course it may not be his call. If a big name coach like a Pat Burns or Pat Quinn lands in Florida, you will know the owner did the hiring, and Martin will be even more of a lame duck.

At 3:31 p.m., April 11, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seems to me that Martin has done a good job as a GM. He gave the good young players reasonable priced long term contracts thus setting the foundation for the future. He also added important pieces (like Vokoun) without giving up a lot. The organization seems to be on the rise and a good coach - not sure if Martin is just that - should get them in the playoffs next season.

At 11:21 a.m., April 12, 2008, Blogger THE NEXT BIG QUESTION said...

You've got to wonder if Martin's presence was so toxic as a coach this year, whether it's a smart idea to keep him as GM. A huge part of being a GM is knowing how to make the right moves, but it's also about providing leadership. Getting the organization going in a positive direction, and creating a winning atmosphere.

The only way I'd move him up, was if I felt that getting some distance from the players would change things. That he would have a different effect on the team as a GM than as a coach, and only if too many bridges haven't already been burned.

Plus you've got to give him the ability to make decisions, not have a meddlesome owner like Cohen usurp the GM's decision making power (a la refusing to trade Jokinen).


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