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article imageNHL: Senators hire Paul MacLean as head coach

By Dustin Pollack     Jun 14, 2011 in Sports
The Ottawa Senators have found their replacement for former head coach Cory Clouston, officially hiring Paul MacLean as the teams new bench boss.
MacLean has spent the last six seasons as an assistant coach in Detroit and prior to his tenure with the Red Wings he spent the 2002-2003 and 2003-2004 seasons as an assistant with the Anaheim Ducks.
In fact, eight of MacLean’s nine seasons behind an NHL bench have been spent alongside Mike Babcock. Together MacLean and Babcock made it to three Stanley Cup finals, winning one in 2008 with Detroit, and losing in 2003 and 2009 with Anaheim and Detroit respectively.
“This is a very exciting day for me and my family,” MacLean told Postmedia. “I going to come here every day to work hard and be just a little bit better.”
MacLean is inheriting an Ottawa Senators that’s made the playoffs just once in the last three years and is coming off a 2010-2011 season in which they finished 13th in the Eastern conference with a 32-40-10 record.
But Senators general manager Bryan Murray, who ironically was also the GM in Anaheim when MacLean was in assistant coach there, is confident in MacLean’s ability to turn the Senators franchise around. It was just four years ago that the Sens were in the Stanley Cup Final.
“I felt Paul fit the profile,” Murray told the Postmedia. “He’s been a player, he’s been a coach, and he’s been an assistant coach in the NHL. He’s been a winner everywhere he’s been.”
Prior to his long stint alongside Mike Babcock, MacLean spent two years in the United Hockey League and six years in the International Hockey League – both leagues he was a head coach. He also was a Phoenix Coyotes assistant coach during the 1996-1997 season.
MacLean is said to be a “for the players” coach.
“It's not me against them. It's us - the Ottawa Senators - against the whole league,” MacLean told the Toronto Sun.
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