Early last week, when we first learned the New York Islanders were parting ways with head coach Barry Trotz, I was pretty clear in my stance: even if the likelihood of getting him to join a rebuilding Blackhawks team was slim, the Blackhawks should at least reach out to express interest.
“… bringing in Trotz would be the first enormous win for Kyle Davidson as the general manager of the Blackhawks — if he can pull it off. Don’t think for one second the list of teams interested in what I consider a future Hall of Fame coach will be short, and there will be other, more tempting options available for him.”
The Blackhawks’ new front office told the media earlier this week that they are still in the early stages of building the profile for their next head coach. GM Kyle Davidson went as far as to say that July was a likely timeline for the team hiring someone. They’re in no hurry to hire just a guy — they want to hire the right person.
Davidson also said he doesn’t feel pressure to hurry up and interview candidates just because there are other jobs open and some big names — Trotz and Pete DeBoer at that time — on the market. And Trotz has already been to Winnipeg — near his hometown — and has reportedly met with the Flyers about their coaching vacancies.
Apparently that doesn’t mean the Hawks won’t at least reach out to express some level of interest. On Friday evening Jay Zawaski reported the Blackhawks are indeed doing their due diligence on Trotz.
I’m told the #Blackhawks are indeed among the teams that have reached out to Barry Trotz about their coaching vacancy, but understand he’s likely not interested in leading a rebuild. Regardless, due diligence is being done.
— Jay Zawaski (@jayzawaski) May 20, 2022
Again, let’s all keep in mind what I wrote last week and what Zawaski echoes in his tweet: Trotz coming to Chicago is a loooong shot. But if we learned anything from the Kentucky Derby, if you’re in the race you’ve got a chance.
This is what I had hoped for, and it’s good to see the Blackhawks at least making the effort to gauge interest from a coach who is, in my mind, a future Hall of Famer.
When the Blackhawks interviewed for the general manager position, they met with individuals with a wide range of experience from hockey and outside the sport as well. So why not have a conversation with one of the best coaches of this generation about the job?