The Washington Capitals coaching staff is now complete for the upcoming season. The team named Kirk Muller and Kenny McCudden assistant coaches. Zack Leddon also got promoted to head strength coach while Mike Wagner was named assistant strength coach.
Muller and McCudden will join assistant coaches Scott Allen and Mitch Love, goaltending coach Scott Murray, assistant coach/video Brett Leonhardt and video coordinator Emily Engel Natzke on head coach Spencer Carbery’s staff.
Muller is 57 and joins the Caps after previously serving as an associate coach with the Calgary Flames. He’s got 17 years of NHL coaching experience on his resume. That includes two stints with the Montreal Canadiens as an assistant coach from 2006 through 2011 and as an associate coach from 2016 to 2021. He also spent two seasons with the St. Louis Blues as an assistant coach from 2014 to 2016.
Muller also served as head coach of the Carolina Hurricanes from 2011 to 2014 and he American Hockey League’s Milwaukee Admirals in 2011.
The native of Kingston, Ontario, oversaw his teams qualify for the playoffs nine times, including two conference final appearances with Montreal in 2010 (yuck) and St. Louis in 2016. His teams have ranked in the top 10 in power play percentage seven times.
During his time with the Blues, his team owned the NHL’s third highest power play percentage at 21.9 percent. So it looks like Muller and Carbery’s combined minds can give the Caps a dramatic improvement on the power play.
McCudden is 61 and joins the Caps after spending the last eight seasons as an assistant coach with the Columbus Blue Jackets. A native of Chicago, McCudden joined the Blue Jackets in 2015 as a skills coach after spending 16 seasons as the skating and skills coach for the AHL’s Chicago Wolves, winning the Calder Cup in 2008.
Now that the coaching staff is rounded out, the Caps can focus on making a trade and then gearing up for the season.