Apr 20, 2014, 8:27 PM EDT
After 16 seasons as Nashville Predators head coach, the team parted ways with Barry Trotz after missing the playoffs for a second straight season in 2013-14. Considering how rare it is to see a coach last that long in the modern NHL, it’s no surprise that Trotz has deep ties with the community. He showed as much on Sunday.
Predators play-by-play guy Pete Weber shared an image of a full-page ad Trotz paid for in The Tennessean to thank Predators fans and the Nashville community overall:
CBS’ Eye on Hockey transcribed Trotz’s message so you don’t need to squint:
I came to Nashville in 1997 as a young NHL coach, but found a family and a home. This community welcomed me, my family and the Predators with open arms and, over the last 16 years, together we have experienced so many great moments creating a special bond between the team, the players and the fans.
It has been an honor to coach the Nashville Predators for the last 16 seasons. Special thanks to the absolutely first class ownership group, David Poile, who I am thankful for giving me a chance and allowing me to work along side him. I am forever grateful. Thank you to the hockey operations staff, the front office, and most importantly, to the fans of Smashville for making Bridgestone Arena such a great hockey environment.
My wish is that this community continues to support those individuals and organizations such as Best Buddies and My Friends House that are near and dear to my heart. Thank you to the ownership for your generous donation this week to the Best Buddies of Tennessee program. This epitomizes your character and commitment to this organization. This community is a wonderful place to live and work and my family will always be grateful for the hospitality we have received and the friendships we have formed that will last a lifetime! We’ve been blessed.
Thank you Smashville!
Classy stuff from Trotz, which is far from surprising.
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