Apr 29, 2014, 4:38 PM EST
“We have a commitment from (owner) Vinnie Viola to win, and to go after the top players in free agency and make this team a winning team right away. That’s what we’re selling.”
That was Panthers general manager Dale Tallon today (audio), sounding a lot like a guy who plans to be extremely busy this summer.
Tallon’s already made one big offseason move, firing coach Peter Horachek, a rookie NHL bench boss the GM deemed “not quite the right fit.”
In replacing Horacek, Tallon plans to interview “a lot of candidates,” but “more NHL head-coaching experience” is a definite requirement.
Tallon confirmed that Peter Laviolette is on the list of candidates, and he called Barry Trotz a “hell of a coach,” so you can assume he’s on the list, too.
You can also assume that Tallon will be working hard to make trades. The Panthers are stocked with young assets, and the GM made it clear he was willing to deal some of them for “the right NHL players.”
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