The Dallas Stars named Rick Bowness as their head coach yesterday, rewarding the interim coach who guided them to the Stanley Cup Final.
He had been the interim head coach since Dec 10, when the team fired Jim Montgomery for “unprofessional conduct.”
“The Stars are very excited to officially announce Rick as the team’s head coach,” general manager Jim Nill said.
“After being called upon in a difficult situation, Rick stepped into the interim head coaching role seamlessly and used his unmatched experience to lead the team to a successful second half of the season and a spot in the Stanley Cup Final. Watching the team throughout our playoff experience, you really saw the team become his.
“His ability to connect with our players and our staff is remarkable.”
Bowness, 65, led Dallas to a 20-13-5 record in his 38 games at the helm. The Stars topped the Calgary Flames in six games in the first round of the playoffs, beat the Colorado Avalanche in seven games in the second round and defeated the Vegas Golden Knights in five games in the Western Conference final in the NHL bubble in Edmonton.
The Tampa Bay Lightning won the Stanley Cup Final in six games. It was the Stars’ first appearance in the final since 2000.
Bowness had been an assistant coach with the Stars since 2018, but he has served as a head coach in parts of five different decades.
He coached 28 games with the Winnipeg Jets in 1988-89, spent one season as coach of the Boston Bruins (1991-92), then led the Ottawa Senators (1992-96), New York Islanders (1996-98) and Phoenix Coyotes (20 games in the 2003-04 season). “My wife Judy and I are thrilled to have this opportunity to continue our work here in Dallas,” Bowness said.
“This team is very special for me. That time in Edmonton was unlike any experience I have ever had in hockey,
and it brought us together as a staff and as a team. We had a great run to the Stanley Cup Final, but we have some unfinished business left and we’re looking forward to the opportunity to build on what we started.”
Bowness has been on a bench as a head or assistant for an NHL-record 2,425 regular-season games. He has a 143-302-48-8 record in 501 career games in his head coaching career.
Meanwhile Unrestricted free agent forward Alex Galchenyuk signed a one-year, $1.05 million contract with the Ottawa Senators, the team announced on Wednesday.
Galchenyuk, 26, recorded 24 points (eight goals, 16 assists) in 59 games last season with the Minnesota Wild and Pittsburgh Penguins. He collected seven points (three goals, four assists) in 14 games after he was traded to the Wild on Feb. 10 in a package for fellow forward Jason Zucker.
“Alex’s signing represents another good addition for us at forward,” Senators general manager Pierre Dorion said. “He’s versatile in that he can play both left wing and center. He’s gifted offensively, has been a solid power-play contributor and is a proven goal scorer in this league.”
Galchenyuk was selected by Montreal with the third overall pick in the 2012 NHL Draft. He has accumulated 320 points (135 goals, 185 assists) in 549 career games with the Canadiens, Arizona Coyotes, Penguins and Wild.
He has 13 points (four goals, nine assists) in 32 career playoff games.
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