Skip to content

Pens make Johnston hiring official, name Rick Tocchet assistant

Jun 25, 2014, 1:42 PM EDT

Rick Tocchet Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Penguins made the hiring of Mike Johnston as the new head coach official this afternoon and with it there are more changes behind the bench.

The Penguins have hired Rick Tocchet to assist Johnston behind the bench and Tony Granato and Todd Reirden have been let go. Those two assisted Dan Bylsma and now with Johnston in charge, he’s bringing in a new group of assistants with one more coach to be hired. Assistant coach Jacques Martin’s role with the team is yet to be determined and goaltending coach Mike Bales will return.

Tocchet was last seen behind the bench with the Tampa Bay Lightning as the team’s head coach from 2008-2010. Now he’ll make his return to action coaching Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang among others alongside Johnston.

“Rick is going to be a very valuable member of the staff here ,” Penguins GM Jim Rutherford said. “He was an outstanding NHL player, a guy who brought toughness and intensity every night along with a high level of skill. The fans in Pittsburgh know that first-hand. He also gained great experience as a coach with three different NHL organizations. We all know he’s got a lot to offer in his new role with the Penguins.”

Tocchet was also an assistant with the Lightning, Colorado Avalanche, and Phoenix Coyotes.

Latest Posts
  1. Blues sign ’14 first-round pick Fabbri

    Sep 2, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT

    Robby Fabbri Getty Images

    He played a key role in Guelph winning the 2014 OHL championship.

  2. Jeff Deslauriers agrees to tryout with Kings

    Sep 2, 2014, 6:35 PM EDT

    Jeff Deslauriers Getty Images

    He’ll have a difficult time winning the backup job over Martin Jones.

  3. First rounder Nikolaj Ehlers signs with Jets

    Sep 2, 2014, 5:12 PM EDT

    Nikolaj Ehlers Getty Images

    He was selected with the ninth overall pick in 2014.

  4. Rinaldo signs two-year extension with Flyers (Updated)

    Sep 2, 2014, 4:05 PM EDT

    Zac Rinaldo Getty Images

    He still has a season left on his existing contract.

  5. Datsyuk interested in playing in KHL someday

    Sep 2, 2014, 3:40 PM EDT

    Pavel Datsyuk Getty Images

    He’s not the only Russian star linked to the KHL recently.

  6. Five PTOs that could be coming to a NHL city near you

    Sep 2, 2014, 2:22 PM EDT

    dustinpennergetty Getty Images

    Which unsigned vets will look to win jobs at camp?

  7. ‘Hawks farmhand Skinner signs in Czech league

    Sep 2, 2014, 10:23 AM EDT

    Anaheim Ducks 2007 Headshots Getty Images

    Veteran AHLer had previously spent time with the Canucks, Avalanche and Islanders organizations.

  8. Red Wings GM preaches patience after slow summer

    Sep 2, 2014, 9:15 AM EDT

    Ken Holland AP

    “I think it’s a great time for the Detroit Red Wings.”

  9. PHT Morning Skate: Nerds vs. dinosaurs

    Sep 2, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT

    Dragon Con AP

    Tuesday’s collection of links.

  10. Oilers GM doesn’t anticipate a trade before training camp

    Sep 1, 2014, 9:01 PM EDT

    2014 NHL Draft - Round 1 Getty Images

    Edmonton wants to assess Leon Draisaitl, it seems.

  11. Challenging early schedule looms for Sharks

    Sep 1, 2014, 7:33 PM EDT

    Antti Niemi, Marc-Edouard Vlasic AP

    Sixteen of their first 21 games are on the road.

  12. Workhorse goalies, forwards from last season

    Sep 1, 2014, 6:05 PM EDT

    2014 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Game Five Getty Images

    Part two of today’s Labor Day posts.

  13. NHL’s hardest working defensemen in 2013-14

    Sep 1, 2014, 4:22 PM EDT

    Minnesota Wild v Chicago Blackhawks - Game Five Getty Images

    Part one of two Labor Day “theme” posts.

  14. Johnston believes Pouliot’s ready for NHL

    Sep 1, 2014, 2:55 PM EDT

    Derrick Pouliot Getty Images

    The new Penguins bench boss previously coached the young defenseman.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. D. Alfredsson (2214)
  2. B. Bishop (2089)
  3. M. Fleury (1883)
  4. J. Schultz (1727)
  5. D. Krejci (1723)
  1. J. Boychuk (1672)
  2. E. Staal (1610)
  3. C. Anderson (1525)
  4. R. Lehner (1481)
  5. D. Setoguchi (1310)