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Penguins hire Jacques Martin as assistant coach

Aug 9, 2013, 11:20 AM EDT

Jacques Martin Getty Images

One of the more renowned defensive minds in hockey will be an assistant coach with a team that, frankly, could use him.

First reported by Louis Jean at TVA Sports, the defensive mind is Jacques Martin, and the team is the Pittsburgh Penguins.

“I’m excited to be back in the NHL, especially with a team like the Penguins,” said Martin. “This is a great opportunity to win the Stanley Cup and be re-united with general manager Ray Shero.”

“Jacques is a highly respected and accomplished coach who will be a tremendous addition to our staff,” Shero said in a release. “He brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our organization because of his extensive background as a head coach and an assistant.”

Martin, 60, and Shero were together in Ottawa during the ’90’s when the former was head coach and the latter an assistant GM of the Senators.

“I know we’re all going to benefit from having Jacques Martin on our staff,” Pens head coach Dan Bylsma said. “Jacques and I have spent a great deal of time over the last few weeks discussing this possibility. It will be great to have another voice, another perspective – especially from a man of Jacque’s experience. We’re all looking forward for getting together as a staff and preparing for the coming season.”

Martin won the Jack Adams Award as NHL Coach of the Year with Ottawa in 1999.

While Martin’s reputation has been built on defense, don’t expect Penguins stars like Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin to be held back from what they do best.

“I believe in a puck-possession game,” Martin said in 2009 upon being named head coach of the Montreal Canadiens. “I think the best defense is if you can play in the offensive zone.”

“When I coached in Ottawa [with players like Daniel Alfredsson, Marian Hossa, Martin Havlat] — I never took away any of their creativity because I think that’s what makes great players.”

  1. furkhanbage - Aug 9, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    Nice one

  2. jeremyroenickdanceparty - Aug 9, 2013 at 11:47 AM

    Is this an insurance policy in case Bylsma chokes again?

  3. hockeyflow33 - Aug 9, 2013 at 11:51 AM

    Defense….Penguins….come on

  4. murtdurt - Aug 9, 2013 at 12:53 PM

    Wow solid hire

  5. canucks30 - Aug 9, 2013 at 1:18 PM

    Solid hire but this has a chance to backfire tremendously if Bylsma starts looking over his shoulder.

    You don’t usually see an assistant with so much more head coaching experience then the actual head coach of a team very often.

    • erbaker67 - Aug 9, 2013 at 1:29 PM

      Well its also not very often where the headcoach has that little experience and a Stanley Cup. Bylsma has done some things right and some wrong. Martin shouldnt be a detriment. Bylsma may have already been looking over his shoulder this summer. Again, when you have that much talent on the team, and no defense, Martin cant make it worse.

    • joey4id - Aug 9, 2013 at 1:41 PM

      I think Bylsma had two choices; accept Martin or leave. They only way he can remain as head coach for the Pens for the next few years is to use Martin to his full potential. .

      • pdmjr - Aug 9, 2013 at 7:54 PM

        Bylsma hired him, and he’s hiring a goalie coach

      • joey4id - Aug 10, 2013 at 8:19 AM

        Bylsma doesn’t pay him, so to say he was hired by Bylsma is incorrect.

  6. jpelle82 - Aug 9, 2013 at 2:24 PM

    maybe some choice words in french will help letang and fleury pull their heads out of their asses.

  7. dropthepuckeh - Aug 9, 2013 at 7:58 PM

    I’m guessing his first order of business will be to get Crosby and Letang to continue practice their diving. Montreal of the South. Whining will be homework.

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