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Regime change: Caps hire Trotz as head coach, name MacLellan GM

May 26, 2014, 6:19 PM EDT

The Washington Capitals have hired their replacements for the outgoing Adam Oates and George McPhee, naming Barry Trotz the 17th head coach and Brian McLellan the sixth general manger in franchise history.

“We are extremely pleased to name Brian MacLellan the team’s general manager and welcome Barry Trotz to Washington as the Capitals coach,” Caps owner Ted Leonsis said in a statement. “After conducting an extensive search for a general manager, we determined that Brian was the best candidate to help us reach our ultimate goal, winning the Stanley Cup. We have witnessed his abilities firsthand, and we have tremendous respect for how he manages people and situations. We feel he has relevant, in-depth knowledge of the strengths and weaknesses of our franchise and will be forceful in addressing them.

“We are also excited to welcome Barry back to the Capitals organization. Barry is a highly respected and accomplished coach who brings us a wealth of experience. He possesses high character and the exact leadership qualities we look for in the head coach. He was the only coach we coveted, and we feel he is an ideal fit to help lead our club.”

Prior to serving as head coach in Nashville for 15 seasons (while recording 557 wins), Trotz served as Washington’s AHL bench boss in Baltimore and Portland from 1992-97. He comes to Washington as one of the longest-tenured coaches in the history of North American professional sports — per the Caps’ release, Trotz is one of just six coaches in all four major North American sports leagues to have coached or managed each of a team’s first 15 seasons of existence (MLB: Connie Mack – 50, Oakland; NFL Curly Lambeau – 29, Green Bay, Tom Landry -29, Dallas, Hank Stram – 15, Kansas City, Paul Brown – 15, Cleveland).

As for MacLellan, he served as McPhee’s assistant for the last seven years and has been with the Washington organization for 13. He served as the GM for the club’s AHL affiliate in Hershey — winning a trio of Calder Cups — and spent three years working in the Caps’ scouting department as well.

MacLellan and Trotz will be formally introduced on Tuesday at the Verizon Center.

  1. capsnbohs23 - May 26, 2014 at 6:25 PM

    I just dont get the decision to promote MacLellan. Serving under GMGM for 14 years, I dont think we will be getting the fresh set of eyes that Ted said he wanted. Im getting tired of the whole “hire someone who has ties to the caps” routine

    • capsnbohs23 - May 26, 2014 at 6:26 PM

      I like Trotz though

  2. joey4id - May 26, 2014 at 6:29 PM

    No surprise that the GM was decided in this case. You don’t hire a coach without a GM. It’s to a point where these hirings and firings are not news when it becomes official.

  3. bencia823 - May 26, 2014 at 6:30 PM

    shocked that they didn’t hire Shero and brought in a guy who is sure to clash with Ovi and his lack of defensive effort

    • capsnbohs23 - May 26, 2014 at 6:38 PM

      Please enlighten me on how you know for certain they will clash?

      • bencia823 - May 26, 2014 at 7:36 PM

        your last defensive minded coach (Hunter) could answer that better than I can

      • capsnbohs23 - May 26, 2014 at 8:30 PM

        Dale Hunter is also just an a$$hole who is generally tough to get along with, Trotz is a players coach

      • capsnbohs23 - May 26, 2014 at 8:36 PM

        Hunter was someone who was gnerally tough to get along with no matter who you were, Trotz is at least a players coach

  4. nybadger - May 26, 2014 at 6:38 PM

    Terrible. Sorry Ovi

  5. canucks30 - May 26, 2014 at 7:00 PM

    They should have hired Fenton or Shero as GM and kept MacLellan in his current role.

    Don’t see the harm in adding other creative hockey minds, especially those from outside the organization who may have new ideas of what needs to be corrected in Washington.

  6. r8rbhawk - May 26, 2014 at 7:08 PM

    Paging Alexovechkinminus35 and fivetozeroingame7 to make a pithy comment, this is a Caps article after all.

    • capsnbohs23 - May 26, 2014 at 8:32 PM

      *gets popcorn ready*

  7. flyerspsu - May 26, 2014 at 7:14 PM

    it will interesting to see how a coach like Trotz deals with Ovechkin, I dont think the organization would be all that quick to take Ovi’s side like with past less experienced coaches like Oates and Hunter that had problems with him

  8. digbysellers - May 26, 2014 at 8:36 PM

    Not for nothing, but has anybody told Doug Yingst that he’s apparently not been the GM of the Hershey Bears since 1998 and he didn’t have much to do with the 3 Calder Cups I guess. I get that the parent club has a huge influence on the talent on their AHL affiliate and MacClellan was probably involved in moves made down there, but to say he was the GM in Hershey is completely incorrect.

  9. 311sucks - May 26, 2014 at 9:24 PM

    i hope trotz works out. the dude always made the best out of a pretty okay roster and now with a large market team that would be willing to spend, he could do really really well.

  10. corky2141 - May 26, 2014 at 9:44 PM

    Connie Mac was the first 50 years if the athletics, but far from Oakland, he did it in Philadelphia.

  11. barkar942 - May 27, 2014 at 12:03 AM

    Darn. I was hoping for Torts and Ovie!
    Trotz and Ovie still should make for an interesting show.

  12. capsgriff011 - May 27, 2014 at 11:38 AM

    Stop hating on Ovi. He has always been open to change, accepted Hunters system, was a good teammate and even blocked shots. When Oates arrived he switched sides and led the league in scoring. Yeah, his back check stinks but that’s nothing some coaching can’t fix. Ovi will be fine.

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