The New York Rangers‘ season might be over, but the whirlwind of drama surrounding the organization continued Wednesday when the team fired head coach David Quinn.
New club president and general manager Chris Dury dismissed Quinn after three seasons — and another failed attempt at making the playoffs, the Rangers announced on Twitter. The story was first reported by New York Post.
Sources told the outlet that assistants Jacques Martin, David Oliver and Greg Brown were also fired but that goaltending coach Benoit Allaire will remain in his position.
The decision to dismiss Quinn just a week after Rangers owner and CEO James Dolan fired team president John Davidson and general manager Jeff Gorton.
“We want to thank JD and Jeff for their contributions to the organization. They are both great hockey professionals who worked hard for the Rangers, however, in order for the team to succeed in the manner our fans deserve, there needs to be a change in leadership,” Dolan said in a statement, via The Athletic.
“Chris is a very sought-after executive and a strong leader, who has proven himself to be one of the top young minds in hockey. We are confident he will effectively guide the team to ensure the long-term success we promised Rangers fans.”
The Rangers were 96-87-25 under Quinn, who still had two years left on his contract. His struggle with a relatively young team in the midst of a rebuild was enough for Dolan to pull the plug.
Adding to the mess was a heated series between the Rangers and Capitals that saw the organization take aim at the league and its director of player safety, George Parros, for failing to suspend Washington forward Tom Wilson after what it called a “horrifying act of violence.”
“Wilson is a repeat offender with a long history of these types of acts and we find it shocking that the NHL and their department of player safety failed to take the appropriate action and suspend him indefinitely,” the statement read.
“Wilson’s dangerous and reckless actions caused an injury to Artemi Panarin that will prevent him from playing again this season. We view this as a dereliction of duty by NHL Head of Player Safety, George Parros, and believe he is unfit to continue in his current role.”
The league did not take kindly to the scathing statement and fined the club $250,000.
“Public comments of the nature issued by the Rangers that were personal in nature and demeaning of a League executive will not be tolerated,” Commissioner Gary Bettman began. “While we don’t expect our Clubs to agree with every decision rendered by the Department of Player Safety, the extent to which the Rangers expressed their disagreement was unacceptable.”
“It is terribly unfair to question George Parros’ professionalism and dedication to his role and the Department of Player Safety,” he continued.
The team is looking to replace Quinn immediately and some of the names being floated around are Gerard Gallant, Rick Tocchet, Bob Hartley, Mike Babcock and former head coach John Tortorella.