It’s part guesswork, part gamble, and part luck. Now the hope is that guesswork is educated, gambling is well thought out, and you make your own luck, and I really believe the stars have done that with Pete DeBoer.
the man He was announced as the new head coach of the team on Tuesday He is a veteran presence with a proven track record and appears to be a good fit for this organization at this time. He has a history of winning playoffs, and that’s become the motto of this team in the past few years. And the thing is, DeBoer can actually improve on that philosophy.
[WORTH A CLICK: Stars name Pete DeBoer the 25th head coach in franchise history]
While the stars bounce around 6th, 7th, and 8th in the conference, DeBoer teams are usually closer to the top four and seeded at home in the first round. Then, when he gets there, the 54-year-old president has a history of doing something. He led Las Vegas three rounds in depth in 2020 and 2021. He took the Sharks to the Stanley Cup Final in 2016 and won six series in four seasons before being fired in 2020.
He went to the Stanley Cup Final with New Jersey back in 2012 and his playoff record of 56-47 ranks him third among current coaches. So he has some skins on the wall.
Of course, there are always two sides of a coin, so why was it available? Well, Vegas missed the playoffs and wanted to go in a new direction. It was only three seasons later, and the Golden Knights hadn’t shown much patience or confidence, but the Golden Knights general manager Kelly McCremon said at the time that the decision was made to put Vegas in a better position moving forward.
“I have a lot of respect for Pete as a man, and I respect him a lot as a coach,” McCremon told ESPN. These decisions are made for the future.”
DeBoer set a 98-50-12 record in three seasons with Vegas, ranking 10th in that span. His teams ranked 11th in scoring 3.27 goals per match, seventh in the number of goals compared to 2.75, second in shots on goal with a rate of 34.0 per game and fourth in shots compared to 29.0. Dallas ranked 20th with 2.74 goals per game and sixth in goals for 2.73. Strs was 20th in shots on target per game at 30.4 and 10th in shots versus 30.1, so there’s a chance the new coaching staff can make more game possession.
Again, this is all guesswork, and you just have to see how DeBoer and his new crew will react to the talent here.
On the good side, the stars have some great young talents Miro HeskanenAnd the Jason RobertsonAnd the Rob HintzAnd the Thomas Harley And the Jake Oettinger And more could come in the form of White Johnson, Thai Delandria, Maverick Burke and Logan Stankoven. DeBoer is in a great position where stars should be able to play a quick game if they so choose.
The stars should also get an interesting reset in the technical staff. While the previous group did a great job getting Dallas into the Stanley Cup Final in 2020, they came together strangely. Jim Montgomery was hired out of college in 2018 and veteran Rick Bowness was hired to manage the defense and be a sports advisor and Montgomery’s friend John Stevens was added the following season. That made it embarrassing in 2019 when Montgomery was fired for “unprofessional behaviour”. Bowness took over as coach and began running forward. Stevens turned back and began managing the defense. Derek Laxdal came from the AHL and started to run the power game and assist the attackers.
While they are all modified, General Manager Jim Neal said he would have loved it if Bowness could assemble his staff. DeBoer will get the chance, so this part of the stars gets a fresh start.
Bottom line, the team has a chance to compete right away. They have played in the knockout rounds in three of the past four seasons, lost twice in overtime to Game 7 and advanced to the Cup Final in 2020. They have many starting players and a wealth of possibilities waiting to be paid. While they have to negotiate new deals for Robertson and Oettinger (as well as Hintz next summer), they seem to have the ability to plug any loopholes that might emerge.
So while this is an educated guess and a research gamble, DeBoer seems like a good fit and could be in the right place at the right time.
The problem with training searches is that you don’t know what isn’t fully done.
This story has not been approved by the National Hockey League or the Dallas Stars Hockey Club.
Mike Hicah He is a Senior Staff Writer at DallasStars.com and has covered the stars since 1994. Follow him on Twitter Tweet embed.