The Dallas Stars announced Sunday morning that head coach Lindy Ruff will not return for next season. Ruff has spent the last 4 seasons behind the bench for the Stars, but the team has not had much success under him. The Stars made the move official on their twitter account.
Lindy Ruff will not return as head coach for the 2017-18 season. https://t.co/13nrg2720H
— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) April 9, 2017
The news isn’t very shocking. In 4 seasons under Ruff, the Stars made the playoffs twice, 2014 and 2016, but couldn’t find much success. After a very good 2015-16 season in which they won the central division, many expected the Stars to be right back at the top during this season, but the opposite has happened. The Stars finished 34-37-11, 6th in the central division and far from a playoff spot.
General manager Jim Nill made a brief statement on the firing via NHL.com:
“I want to personally thank Lindy for his commitment and professionalism over the four years that he served as our head coach in Dallas,” said Nill. “Lindy is not only a highly respected coach, he more importantly is a great person and an outstanding family man whom I have the utmost respect for on and off the ice.”
It will be interesting to see if Ruff, who will be looking for his third head coaching gig, will be able to find a new home. After a lengthy run with Buffalo, making the playoffs 8 of his 14 seasons there, many expected Ruff to have a long stay with a very talented Stars team.
For the Stars, whoever comes in to coach this team will have plenty of talent to work with. Tyler Seguin, Jamie Benn, Jason Spezza lead this team offensivley, with John Klingberg leading on the blueline. The goaltending situation is the biggest question, outside of who will coach the team now, but that will likely be settled with the upcoming expansion draft in June.