The Toronto Maple Leafs wasted no time in making wholesale changes this morning, letting go of five members of staff, including General Manager Dave Nonis and interim Head Coach Peter Horachek. The Leafs have also announced some position shuffling. Here’s exactly how everything has gone down.
- Dave Nonis is out as Maple Leafs GM. Nonis was originally hired by the team in 2008 as Toronto’s senior vice-president and director of operations and promoted to General Manager in January 2013, upon the firing of Brian Burke.
- Peter Horachek is no longer the interim Head Coach, and will vacate the team immediately, rather than go back to assistants duties. Horachek was originally hired at the beginning of the season and took over the team in early January after the firing of Randy Carlyle. He finished with a record of 9-28-5.
- Chris Dennis has been relived of his duties as assistant coach. Dennis was originally Toronto’s video co-ordinator, but jumped to coaching duties at the beginning of the 2013/14 season.
- Steve Spott has also been relieved of his duties as assistant coach. Originally hired as the head coach of the Toronto Marlies, where he won a division title and went to the AHL’s Western Conference finals, Spott’s removal is likely in an effort to start with an entirely fresh bench next year.
- Steve Staios will no longer be assistant coach, but will remain in the organization. He joined the bench on an interim basis to fill Horachek’s role, but will return to managing the Player Development division.
- Rick St. Croix has been removed as Toronto’s goaltending coach. This comes after a rough year for Jonathan Bernier and James Reimer, and amid rumours of a potential hiring of Arizona Coyotes goaltending coach Sean Burke.
- Kyle Dubas and Mark Hunter will remain assistant general managers of the club, but until a replacement is found, will split duties as interim leaders.
While the scope of the changes were a lot larger than what was expected, the timing makes a lot of sense. There is absolutely no reason to have these guys go through the process of closing interviews if you expected to remove them at some point. It’ll be really interesting to see what the next step is for the organization as it makes sense of this mess.