The Anaheim Ducks have fired head coach Randy Carlyle. General manager Bob Murray will take over as head coach for the remainder of the season.
We could all see this firing coming from a mile away, given the Ducks' recent performance of seven consecutive losses and losses in 19 of their last 21 games. The Ducks’ minus-55 goal differential is another key reason they now sit dead last in the Western Conference. It is also worth mentioning that injuries to multiple key players have played a significant part in the Ducks' massive struggles, which include Rickard Rakell, Corey Perry, Ondrej Kase, Cam Fowler, Jakob Silfverberg, Hampus Lindholm, and now John Gibson.
Murray has never been an NHL coach and won't stay behind the bench beyond this season, so appointing himself as coach may not bring the intended result as far as immediately turning this team around (although could it get any worse?) However, Murray’s presence behind the bench will expedite a necessary day of reckoning for the Ducks' roster. Murray’s most important immediate task will be to make a decision on Silfverberg, who will be a UFA after this season. Perry and Getzlaf contracts expire another two summers after that, but the declining 33-year-old forwards and their $8 million-plus contracts are likely staying put.
Dallas Eakins, who you may remember from his Edmonton days, is rumored to be the frontrunner for the Ducks’ head coaching job next season. He is currently coaching the Ducks’ AHL affiliate, the San Diego Gulls, to a respectable 25-15-2-3 record. We will discuss the fantasy impact of his hiring if and when he is hired.
Players this helps:
Everyone (short term), as the Ducks have nowhere to go but up at the moment. However, because the GM is also now the coach, this is a very volatile situation that could quickly change player values. The Ducks have many players in deep freezes, including the following:
Getzlaf: 2 G and 7 PTS and minus-27 in last 20 GP