Well, it’s been quite a while since there was much to talk about in the Battle of Alberta. But since both the Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames have fired their coaches in the off season and are announcing new ones today, I thought it might be fitting to do a comparison to help out any teams that might be looking for coaching in the future. So part 5 of the “What Would You Do” series offers this story of two jilted coaches.
Craig MacTavish vs. Mike Keenan
Craig MacTavish birthday: August 15, 1958
Mike Kennan birthday: October 21, 1949
Craigers is about ten years younger than Mike, so less likelihood of mid-game naps, senile press conferences and periodic stories of “when I was a child.” This one goes to Mac-T.
MacTavish’s hockey career: 19 seasons as a player in the NHL
Kennan’s hockey career: 0 seasons as a player in the NHL
Mac-T has spent more time on NHL rinks than Mike has. That NHL experience makes MacTavish the better choice, I believe.
MacTavish’s coaching record: 656 games- 301 (W) – 252 (L) – 47 (T) – 56 (OTL) – .457 winning percentage
Kennan’s coaching record: 1386 games- 672 (W) – 531 (L) – 147 (T) – 36 (OTL) – .484 winning percentage
Well, I guess this one goes to Kennan, on account of the more games coached, as well as the winning percentage.
MacTavish’s playoff coaching record: 19-17 .528 winning percentage
Kennan’s playoff coaching record: 96-75 .561 winning percentage
Again, give this one to Iron Mike. More experience and a higher winning percentage.
MacTavish’s Stanley Cups: 4 as a player- 1987- Edmonton, 1988- Edmonton, 1989- Edmonton, 1994- New York Rangers
Kennan’s Stanley Cups: 1 as a coach- 1994- New York Rangers
This one goes to Mac-T again, just because he was a big part of that Oilers dynasty, could pull off wearing orange and blue, and stuck with the Oilers in his coaching career as well.
Oh, this also goes to MacTavish because Keenan wouldn’t have that Cup in ’94 without him. Well, him and Messier and Lowe and Anderson and Leetch and Richter. But you get the point.
MacTavish’s Bad-Ass-ness: Last player in the NHL to not wear a helmet.
Kennan’s Bad-Ass-ness: Nicknamed ‘Iron Mike.’
This one goes to Mac-T. I mean, there is a certain stupidity to not wearing a helmet, but how bad-ass is that?
So for all you GMs out there looking to fill a coaching role, I just made your job a bit easier. Don’t worry about Keenan’s experience. Just give Mac-T a call.
Stay classy, Craig MacTavish.