Beyond the measure of playing agility, power, deceit and pace lie the brain that drives the player to their intensity and adjustment to their opponents play. However, it has always been about one personality, the commander y the hat ensure that his general follow all instructions for his platoon to come out of every brawl victorious.
Although, not so many believe in the brilliance of the coach as the force behind the team domination – while many feel the greatness of the player and the choice of the franchise management to scout the best draft to fasten their dominance in the league in other to scoop the Stanley cup at the end of each season is beyond the comprehension of what the coaches in a team stand to achieve.
Despite the importance of players – from the uniqueness of their play and ingenuity that rise above the tactical nuance and structure to which a team can play, the coach is a major reason while the team can achieve success from their man-management, game approach and the game understanding is enough to ensure that they fuse the rookie, the best player and the potential complimentary for a better purpose but having the best season with the best NHL draft.
However, beyond the cadre of their achievement or management – below are the top ten coaches that have to take the NHL by fire.
Despite his long time in the game as a player, Quinn is better known as a coach that brings about success to his team with series of innovation and template on how to play the game – he won so many matches in his realm while turning some troubled team into a Stanley Cup contender is beyond a fascinating achievement of medals and laurel to exert his claim as the greatest.
In fact, in his active time, Pat Quinn coached different team’s from Philadelphia Flyers, Los Angeles Kings, Vancouver Canucks, New York Rangers, Toronto Maples Leaf and Edmonton Oilers – he however would have his best seasons with the Philadelphia Flyers whom he took to the Stanley cup final only to loose on overtime of the 7th series of the final against the New York Islander.
More so, the Canadian international in his first full season played 35 games invested but his final loss reduced the importance of such season in his career but he went on to win 648 games out of the 1400 matches he coached for over 30 years is enough to categorize him among the greatest in the history of the hockey league.
Coming through the rank as the Buffalo Sabres with many dilemmas at hand – replacing a coach that just won Jack Adam trophy, creating a toxic atmosphere and declining a bumper one-year extension deal.
Lindy Ruff comeo was so solid and seemed easy for a that has no experience in the National Hockey League to stabilize the team on all from while making them compete on all front while advancing to the Eastern Conference Finals in the same season and reach the final of the Stanley Cup in the following campaign – only to lose to the formidable Dallas star.
Though, the Canadian coach guided the Buffalo Sabres for 15years but he only won Jack Adam’s award once in 2006, while he also came second in the following year behind Alain Vigneault – but he would guide the Sabres to another final in 2006 and 2007 only to lose against Carolina Hurricanes and Otawa Senators respectively despite the Sabres inability to finals in the three previous years amidst their bankruptcy make his achievement in the following years more stupendous but his impressive coaching stat while racking up winning for the Sabres is enough to get him on the list of the greatest coach.
He remain the coach to have won the most match for a single franchise in NHL history with over 500 – he also is the coach with the longest coaching career with a single club – though he also coached Dallas Stars, New York Rangers as an assistant coach and currently serving as the New York Devil head coach.
A psycho or a mentor, many coach and people relish his temper as a tool that drive them to be physically and mentally alert to their game – even, in his interview with Gary Smith in 1995, the bully-Canadian coach attest that “My temper is a tool,” Keenan said. “I lose my temper for the right reasons, to make players better.”
The Canadian coach had his temper overshadow his successful campaigns in the league, as its difficult for many general Manager to deal with his temper – thus, he always have to find new franchise to occupy him almost every time while he coached more than 7 franchise over his NHL career, for 1,386 games, with 672 victories as he won the Jack Adams Award in 1985 for an outstanding campaign he had with Philadelphia Flyers.
But he only managed to win the Stanley Cup with New York Ranger in 1994 while he also guided Philadelphia Flyers to two finals – then, achieved the same feat with Blackhawk in 1992, only for him to lose the final again in the only time he ever make final with the Chicago’s team.
In fact, Mike Keenan has his entire NHL coach career cut short with his temper – where he only managed to last 25years in the league, but his success and how he set his team to play is fascinating enough to make him among the greatest ever coach to ply their trade in the NHL.
A coach that came to the league like a wind, with short career stint with New York Rangers and Philadelphia Flyers in a space of nine years.
Undoubtedly one of the greatest manager in the history of Philadelphia Flyer and in the history of the National Hockey League as a whole. Fred Shero did not only make the game swift in his era, he definitely command respect from his player – enough to make Philadelphia won the Stanley Cup on two occasion consecutively, while he also guided the New York Rangers to their first ever Stanley Cup final where they lost against Montreal Canadiens.
However, late coach blessed the ice ring with high percentage of wins with 60.6% victories of his NHL games in charge at 451 victories. looking at the fact Philadelphia Flyer only had two Stanley Cup till now is reference to the Shero’s greatness, coupled with his winning ration in his NHL short career makes him an undoubtedly one of the greatest ever coach in NHL.
One of only few coach that transform their successful playing career into even bigger thing as a coach – the Canadian guided his franchise as a player into a fearsome terror in the mind of opposition during his 13 years reign as the Montreal Canadians coach is beyond an outstanding feat, while guiding his team to an impressive 9 Stanley Cup finals and winning eight of them, and reaching semifinal on four occasion is quite a terror for other team plying their trade in the competition.
In fact, in Blake’s time as a coach, he guided from bench after injury cut his playing career short – only for him to have 500 victories of his 914 games in charge. His eight Stanley Cup is makes his second on the list of coaches with most Stanley Cup triumph.
Mike lay an emphasis on play tenderness with the use the use of skill and possession base game rather than physicality – although he was criticized heavily for his approach but that won’t stopped the Canadian international from achieving stint of success in his eighteen years spell in NHL.
He became an instant success when he was appointed by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in 2011-2002 as he guided his first NHL team to the Stanley Cup final while losing to the New Jersey Devil in game seven of the finals, but his Stanley Cup achievement would arrived when he was coaching the Detroit Red Wing in 2008.
He also achieved Stanley Cup appearance but he would repeat his 2002 record by losing on game seven to Pittsburg Penguins. But his magnificent style of play that opaque dominance in artistic nature could only make the dominant coach present in the Jack Adam’s award final on two occasions while he only missed the playoff once in his entire 18 years spell in NHL.
One the best thing that ever happened to New York highlander, the diminutive coach was an aura of success – while he command enough authority in the game throughout his coaching career that lasted with 1607 games with 782 victories and 577 lost is enough for the Canadian coach to be a legend in the NHL ice ring.
He had two franchise to coached in his NHL career but his success came with New York Islander when he won four consecutive Stanley Cup from 1980 to 1983 and only had to miss the NHL playoff on four occasions in his over 20 years spell in NHL after spending his early career with the St. Louis Blues before giving the New York Islander 19 years of his career.
Fired from his position as the head coach of the St. Louis Blues when they are on the brink of losing out on playoff after the Canadian had guided the St. Louis team to seven consecutive playoff – he further express his coaching prowess with the Colorado Avalanche where he made two playoffs in three years until he finally won the most coveted Stanley Cup with Chicago Blackhawk on three occasions despite making 9 playoffs appearances.
Winning 962 games from the 1761 games coached throughout his NHL career with 54.3% victories and won the Jack Adam’s award once in 2000 to complement his art of the game – which is an outstanding feat to be among the greatest ever coach in NHL
At the top of the NHL greatest coaching food chain lie a man of manor with an art of ice ring understanding which facilitate enough success. Scotty Bowman started his career with St. Louis Blues where he lost three Stanley Cup final consecutively against the Montreal Canadiens on two occasions and Boston Bruins respectively – until he moved to Montreal Canadiens where he began to exert his prowess as he won five Stanley Cups in eight years where he also appear in the playoff all his seasons with the franchise.
More so, the brilliant coach couldn’t win the final in his next stop after leaving the Canadiens but quickly turn the table around at Pittsburg Penguin – he however have his last stunt of three Stanley Cup victories with Detroit Red Wing where he made playoff in nine consecutive seasons.
In fact, Bowman showed the aura of greatness like no other coach in NHL with his 1244 victories in 2141 games he coached, coupled with 28 seasons of playoffs, 9 Stanley cup in three decades of NHL coaching career, coupled with two Jack Adam’s award is beyond cadre of any coach in the league.
Arguably the greatest coach in NHL, in terms of trophy, winning ration and any other coefficient of greatness measure in the ice rings.