Wednesday, June 15, 2011

GM Joe set to appoint Glen "The Man" Gulutzan as Stars Head Coach

Stars fans: get excited. We're about to have a new coach and, in a controversial decision, General Manager Joe Nieuwendyk actually chose one with a history of winning.

Yes, Glen Gulutzan, known to people fond of rhyming as Glen "The Man" Gulutzan, has been the Cedar Park Baby Stars' coach for the last two season and in that time he's gone 87-56-17 over the regular season and 16-14 in the playoffs including a run to the Calder Cup Finals in the team's inaugural season.

But before that he was coaching in front of the greatest fans in the world in the greatest hockey city in America with the Las Vegas Wranglers of the ECHL where he posted a 254-124-53 record in the regular season and a 36-31 in the playoffs including a run to the Kelly Cup finals in the 2007-08 season. For the math-impaired amongst you, that works out to be a 341-180-70 record across his whole coaching career.

The big knock against "GG" is his age and, according to former theother6seconds blogger Cole Jones, his mugshot makes him look like a punk "and not in the Henry Rollins way".

Decide for yourself.
While many people are chalking GG's 39-years young youth up as a tally in the "con" column, think about the Stars current roster: The majority of the team aren't even 30 themselves. Then with all the retirements and free agent defections of the past few years, not to mention the Brad Richards departure that hung around like an $8 million elephant in the room since he was traded to the team in 2008, the team is set to get even younger. I'd argue that it's actually beneficial to have a younger coach that's going to be able to build a rapport with his young players as they begin a new era.

What about the veterans, you say? Well, the only influential veteran on the team that isn't on the way out is Stephane Robidas, and when have you ever heard of Robi causing locker room problems?

That said, I do see a little bit of a problem arising when it comes to Mike Ribeiro, the heir of the vacated first line center position. He's still a far cry from the problem manchild that was Sean Avery, but he still has had more locker room problems over the course of his career than anyone currently on the Stars roster. Then again, it's probably a good thing that someone like him is the only cause for concern given how little we've heard about him since he was given a more important leadership role on the team. It's highly unlikely that he'd cause any trouble, but he's probably the most likely to do it.

Finally, young coaches have been all the rage across the NHL over the last couple of years, the youngest being Tampa Bay's 39-year old bench boss Guy Boucher who, if you'll remember, just took his team to the Eastern Conference Finals in his first year. Tied for second is Pittsburgh's Dan Bylsma who was 38 when he led the Pens to a Cup after being their coach for less than 50 games.

In any case, GG is a great choice for the Stars as they transition from the Era of Brad to the Era of Jamie.

Tomorrow: The Inaugural Six Six Hicks Thislist- a list of the people surrounding the Stars that we here at SSH just cannot stand.

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