According to The Hockey News, the Buffalo Sabres could hire Washington Capitals associate head coach Todd Reirden.
The Washington Capitals are going to experience a few changes this offseason. These changes are not just limited to the roster. They’ll be losing some front office personnel to the Vegas Golden Knights. However, the Capitals might also suffer a loss or two behind the bench.
According to The Hockey News, associate head coach Todd Reirden would make a lot of sense as the Buffalo Sabres next head coach.
"At his Buffalo press conference, [general manager Jason Botterill] said that he wants his Sabres to play high-tempo, puck possession hockey. Washington was one of the best possession teams in both the regular season and the playoffs. And the new GM wants order."
More from Stars and Sticks
- Alex Ovechkin will score 50 goals in 2023-24
- It’s time for Capitals fans to chill out with the Anthony Mantha hate
- The Capitals Have Several Potentially Bad Contracts
- Top 3 Capitals prospects to watch at Rookie Camp
- Top 3 undrafted invites to watch at Capitals Rookie Camp
There’s a lot more to the rumors. Reirden and Botterill have worked together in the past, specifically with the Pittsburgh Penguins. For his first hire, the new general manager likely wants someone he’s familiar with and comfortable with. Reirden fills that description perfectly. Of course, technically so did former Sabres head coach Dan Bylsma.
Reirden has been knocking on the door for a while now. He has no experience as an NHL head coach, but has a lot of experience as an assistant head coach. Some very good teams have trusted him a lot, which is telling of him.
The Sabres are looking to greatly improve their defense and overall play. A lot of this will fall on Botterill, who must improve a dreadful core of blue liners. Reirden would certainly help out, as his speciality has always been working with the defensemen.
Washington clearly values him, appointing him associate coach to keep him on the staff. But if Reirden gets the right offer for his first NHL head coaching job, it’s hard to see him turning it down. It’s been a long time coming for the veteran assistant.