The Philadelphia Flyers have named Alain Vigneault as their new head coach, the team announced Monday.
Vigneault becomes the 21st head coach in franchise history, joining the team after a five year stint with the New York Rangers that came to an end in 2017-2018.
This is the fourth team for the 57-year-old, who coached the Rangers, Vancouver Canucks and Montreal Canadiens prior to his Philadelphia tenure.
“We are extremely excited to have Alain join this franchise and lead our team behind the bench for many years to come,” said Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher. “He brings a tremendous amount of success over an extended period of time that will prove valuable to our team to take the next steps in returning the winning culture to the Philadelphia Flyers organization.”
Vigneault has his work cut out for him in Philadelphia, but his pedigree is nevertheless impressive.
And for Fletcher, this is his opportunity to make his mark on the franchise. He was hired in November after the ousting of Ron Hextall and has since fired coach Dave Hakstol, replacing him with interim coach Scott Gordon.
“The history they have established and the passionate fan base has made this a first-class franchise. I am excited to work with Chuck, the talented group of players, and the prospects coming up through the system in order to return Philadelphia to the top of the NHL landscape,” Vigneault said.
The Flyers, 37-37-8 this season, haven’t been past the first round of the playoffs since 2012. They last saw action in a Stanley Cup Final in 2010.
This year’s model of the Philadelphia Flyers was more of the same, with an odd mix of young players and veterans peppering the lineup. After a core group of veterans, including Claude Giroux and James van Riemsdyk, the rookies seem primed to take over. Goalie Carter Hart made an impression this season, for instance, and that could be a good starting point for Vigneault.
With 1,216 career games coached in the NHL, the Quebec City native brings plenty of experience to the Flyers. He has a career winning percentage of .588, with 139 playoff games under his belt. He’s been to the Stanley Cup Final twice and has won seven divisional titles.
(Photo credit: Martin Chevalier / JdeM)