If Jacques Lamaire’s new title of special assignment coach with the Maple Leafs still has you scratching your head, the former Stanley Cup champion bench boss clarified what his role entails heading into the season.
Speaking on Sportsnet’s Prime Time Sports on Monday, Lemaire said both general manager Lou Lamoriello and head coach Mike Babcock both approached him with the opportunity shortly after Lamoriello was hired. Lemaire will essentially be an extra set of eyes watching from the press box (or his cottage) and reporting to Babcock regularly.
“First of all, Mike (Babcock) is the head coach and will take all decisions,” Lemaire told Bob McCown and Elliott Friedman. “My role is … I will be watching all the games and giving him my input on the players, on everything that goes on. It just gives you another idea, another opinion on people.”
Lemaire went on to admit that he didn’t watch much of the Leafs last season but “it won’t be long” before he is able to start assessing the players.
When asked if he believes Lamoriello and Babcock — both known for wanting control — will be able to work together, Lemaire said “it’s a great fit” for the Maple Leafs.
“Both of them, they love hockey,” he added. “They have a passion for the game. I think it’ll be a great fit.”
Here’s the complete interview: