As I indicated I would do last night, I paid no attention to this game beyond reading the score updates on Twitter. I watched the WJC game, which was well-played, exciting, close, and my team won in the end. So kind of the opposite of Jackets’ games these days.
I’ve been hesitant about climbing on the fire Hitchcock bandwagon, in part because I think the team screwed up badly way back when Dave King was fired. So I’ve been reluctant to say throw an experienced coach overboard when the problems aren’t just about the coach. I still think it’s not all just about the coach, and I’m not convinced that firing Hitchcock is going to bring about some magical overnight turnaround. But I’m more and more of the opinion that a shake-up and a change of direction are needed. Playoffs are probably impossible for this season no matter what. But it just feels like this tailspin has gone on too long and next season could be lost too if something doesn’t happen soon. So with some reservations, I think I’ve moved over to the pro-coaching change side.
It is true that a lot of the comments on Puck-Rakers and elsewhere calling for Hitch to be fired have been short on suggestions for who should replace him. No one seems too excited about any of the current assistant coaches, so I can’t see one of them being promoted, except maybe as a temporary measure. And I don’t think anyone wants Howson behind the bench. I am intrigued by Kevin Dineen, a named that has been tossed around. He’s young, had some background with the organization, has had some success in the AHL. And he comes from a coaching background, his father having been a long-time coach. He could be a good fit in Columbus.