The Columbus Blue Jackets have announced their new coach Thursday, promotion Former assistant Brad Larsen to take responsibility for it John Tortorella.
Larsen, 44, has been an assistant coach for Columbus for the past seven seasons.
Here are five things to know about the new Blue Jackets trainer:
Brad Larsen’s goal was to become a head coach in the National Hockey League
In a 2012 interview with masslive.comLarsen explained his future plans:
“Being a head coach in the NHL? That’s my goal, sure, but there’s no need to rush.” “Training is a process, there is a lot that goes into it – all the preparation, all the study of your team and the other teams, plus learning how to motivate your players. It all takes time. You need time to grow,” he said.
Did familiarity with Columbus lead to Brad Larsen getting the job?
Being an assistant to the Blue Jackets since the 2014-15 season certainly didn’t hurt his chances.
Six options have been reported: Larsen, David Quinn, Gerard Gallant, Rick Tuchet, Todd Nelson and Jukka Yalonen, vying for the job.
Working under the direction of both Tortorella and Todd Richards led to him being a favourite.
Brad Larsen has training experience with the Springfield Falcons
Although not a head coach job in the NHL, Larsen has experience managing a team: Springfield Falcons of the American Hockey League.
The Falcons won from 36 wins the previous year there to 45 in their first year in 2012-13, then followed up with 47 wins in their second season.
Brad Larsen played for the Colorado Avalanche and Atlanta Thrashers
Larsen made his NHL debut playing one game for Avalanche in 1997-98 and nine games in 2000-01 before making 50 appearances in 2001-02.
He was marred by injuries in his career, and in 2004 he was traded to the Thrashers. His biggest success was in Atlanta, scoring seven goals in both 2005-06 and 2006-2007. He played 62 games in his final NHL season with the Thrashers in 2007-08.
He was traded to the Anaheim Ducks in the off-season but due to injuries he was unable to play.
Playing with Canada, Brad Larsen has a pair of IIHF World Junior Championships gold medals
Larsen was part of the 1996 and 1997 Canadian teams that won gold at the IHF Junior World Championships. He scored a goal and assist in 1996 and assisted in 1997. Among his teammates were Jarom Iginla and José Tudor.