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Lightning extend head coach John Cooper

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In the midst of one of the best seasons in NHL history, the Tampa Bay Lightning have decided to lock up their head coach to a longterm deal before his value gets too high due to a potential deep playoff run.

The team announced Tuesday that they have signed Jon Cooper to a multiyear contract extension, putting an end to speculation that he would reach unrestricted free agency and test the market in the offseason.

“I am very pleased to announce Jon’s extension today…His ability to forge impactful relationships with everyone from players to staff has been a trademark of his tenure with the organization and he is the absolute best coach for our hockey team.” said Lightning general manager Julien BriseBois.

“I would like to thank him and his family for their continuous commitment to the organization, as well as to the Tampa Bay community, and I look forward to working in partnership with Jon for years to come.”

The 51-year old, who is currently the longest tenured NHL head coach, is in his seventh season with the franchise since replacing Guy Boucher midway through the 2012/13 season on March 25, 2013.

Throughout his tenure, the Lightning have posted a combined 302-157-44 regular season record, qualified for the playoffs five times, have reached the Eastern Conference Final twice, and made it to the Stanley Cup Final in 2015 (which ended in a six game elimination by the hands of the Chicago Blackhawks)

If the Lightning are able to live up to expectations this postseason, they will end their 15-year drought and take home the Stanley Cup for the first time since the John Tortorella, Vincent Lecavalier, and Marty St.Louis days in 2004.

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Patrick Kane becomes second youngest American player in NHL history to reach 1000-point mark

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Chicago Blackhawks star Patrick Kane accomplished quite the feat during the team’s 5-2 win over the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday.

By assisting on Brandon Saad’s third period goal to make it 4-1 Chicago, Kane recorded his 1000th career NHL point. The significance of that? Well it puts him among the all-time great U.S. born players.

This made him the 10th American ever to reach the milestone. At 31 years of age, he is also the second youngest player among those lucky 10, only trailing the great Jeremy Roenick by eight days.

He was emotional about it following the game.

“That was special…What a moment, obviously, with everyone coming onto the ice and sharing that moment with me” said Kane.

“You see some faces in that pile that have been a big part of a lot of those points, whether it’s been [Jonathan Toews] or [Duncan Keith] or [Alex] DeBrincat recently. Saader to finish it off I think was pretty cool.”

Kane, who was selected first overall in the 2007 NHL Draft, has spent his entire career with the organization. Along with winning three Stanley Cups, multiple awards, and making nine NHL All-Star games, he has managed to compile 380 goals and 620 assists over a span of 12-plus seasons and 953 regular season games with the Blackhawks.

He has 60 points in 52 games this season.


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Hurricanes defenceman Dougie Hamilton out long term with broken left fibula

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The Carolina Hurricanes have been dealt a major blow to their defensive core.

The team announced that veteran defenceman Dougie Hamilton will miss an extended period of time after breaking his left fibula during their 3-2 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday night.

Hamilton sustained the injury when he fell awkwardly into the boards after fighting for the puck with forward Kevin Stenlund with 16 seconds left in the second period.

The 26-year old has recorded 14 goals and 26 assists in 46 games this season. There is no timetable for his return.

As a result, his spot at the 2020 All-Star Game with the Metropolitan team has been filled by teammate Jaccob Slavin.

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Golden Knights fire head coach Gerard Gallant, immediately replace him with Peter DeBoer

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The Vegas Golden Knights have made major changes following their loss on Tuesday night.

Just hours after their 4-2 road loss to the Buffalo Sabres, the team announced they have relieved head coach Gerard Gallant and assistant coach Mike Kelly of their duties. They immediately followed that with hiring Peter DeBoer to take Gallant’s place.

Gallant, 56, was hired as the franchise’s first-ever head coach in April 2017, and immediately led them to a trip to the Stanley Cup Final in their inaugural campaign in the NHL.

However, things had soured since they blew a major three goal lead with 10 minutes remaining in Game 7 of the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs last April.

Having the likes of Mark Stone, Max Pacioretty and Paul Stastny signed to major multiyear deals, they have high expectations, and came into 2019/2020 expected to compete for the cup. So far they have gotten out to a pedestrian 24-19-6 start, and are losers of four straight games heading into Wednesday.

Gallant leaves the franchise with a 118-75-20 record over two plus seasons, and won 16 combined playoff games during that span.

DeBoer, on the other hand, was just 35 days removed from being let go as head coach of the San Jose Sharks. He has quite the NHL resume backing him up.

The 51-year old has won 415 games, and been a head coach for three different teams (Florida Panthers, New Jersey Devils, Sharks) over 12 seasons.

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