Hall of Famer Larry Robinson on the ’89 Canadiens: “We screwed up.”

Larry Robinson (Photo by B Bennett/Getty Images)

It’s hard to top Larry Robinson’s resume. Not only did the Hall of Famer win six Stanley Cups as a defenseman with the Montreal Canadiens, but he also hoisted the trophy as head coach of the New Jersey Devils in 2000. Now the director of player development for the San Jose Sharks after three years as an associate coach, Robinson has been helping this generations’ defenders hone their craft in Northern California.

But there’s always the one that got away and for Robinson, it came in 1989, when he played his last season for the Habs, before joining the Los Angeles Kings the next year. Montreal faced off against Calgary in a rematch of the 1986 final (won by the Habs) and despite the fact the Flames had a slightly better record in the regular season, Robinson believes the Canadiens should have won the Cup.

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Top 10 coaches by points percentage: Where does Mike Babcock sit?

Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock

The Toronto Maple Leafs have been mired in the basement of the NHL for several seasons, but the hiring of coach Mike Babcock is giving Leafs Nation a reason for hope for a better and much brighter future.

While he hasn’t coached long enough to make the top 10 all-time wins list, Babcock does have the most of any coach to be behind the bench for fewer than 1,000 games. As such, he has managed to become one of the effective coaches in the history of the game.

In order to better represent who exactly the top 10 coaches by points percentage are, however, we have to set a limit of at least 100 games as an NHL bench boss. Otherwise some coaches, like Cap Raeder, who was the fill-in coach for the San Jose Sharks for one game – a victory – have near perfect winning percentages without really having control of the club.

Here are the top 10 best coaches by points percentage: Read more

New Oilers coach McLellan: It’s not about playoffs – it’s about building a foundation

Adam Proteau
Todd McLellan  (Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)

After days of rumors, the Edmonton Oilers confirmed Tuesday they were hiring former San Jose Sharks head coach Todd McLellan as their new bench boss. And in his introductory press conference with his new employer, the veteran coach wisely played down playoff expectations, instead talking about a new start – both for the freshly-remade front office, and for the roster itself.

“We’re not going to talk about playoffs here,” McLellan said. “We’re going to talk about building a foundation.”

That’s a savvy a way to phrase it, because it leaves ownership of the team’s failures to past administrations, and gives McLellan and new GM-president Peter Chiarelli a clean start. Although their fans will remember the Oilers’ struggles and ache to get into the post-season right away, Oilers brass can’t start making shortcuts or taking high-risk gambles to accelerate the process. Read more

UPDATED: Mike Babcock done interviewing, decision likely coming Wednesday

Mike Babcock (Getty Images)

Mike Babcock is inching closer to making his decision about where he will be coaching next season and his free agent saga could come to an end Wednesday.

The longtime Detroit Red Wings coach told MLive.com’s Ansar Khan that he has now talked to every team he is going to speak to about their coaching vacancies and that he is planning on talking things through with his family and Detroit GM Ken Holland one more time.

“Just going to re-visit everything one more time (with Holland),” Babcock told Khan. “I’ve talked to all the teams I’m talking to.” Read more

San Jose joins list of potential destinations for Mike Babcock

Jared Clinton
Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock

Add another team to the official Mike Babcock coaching sweepstakes.

According to a report from Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, the San Jose Sharks have officially filed the necessary paperwork to compensate the Detroit Red Wings should they hire Babcock away from the Detroit Red Wings. The Sharks join the Buffalo Sabres and Toronto Maple Leafs as clubs that have agreed to compensate the Red Wings.

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Memorial Cup preview: How each team wins or loses

Leon Draisaitl (Melissa Baecker/Getty Images)

We know our four teams for the Memorial Cup now. Thanks to Oshawa’s ousting of Connor McDavid and the Erie Otters, the Generals will represent the OHL, joining Kelowna of the WHL, plus Quebec (the hosts) and Rimouski in the QMJHL. So who is favored to win it all? Ah, that’s a thorny question in a tournament that often surprises. But let’s take a look at what you should know about the four worthy squads in contention.

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Todd McLellan close to becoming coach of the Edmonton Oilers

Jared Clinton
Todd McLellan  (Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)

When the coaching vacancy opened up in Edmonton, paired with a few comments by Mike Babcock about the youth in Tampa Bay, it appeared that the Detroit Red Wings bench boss, who is now a free agent coach, was set to move to the Oilers to coach young guns. Not so fast, though.

According to a report from Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, it’s Babcock’s protege, Todd McLellan, who will instead be patrolling the Oilers bench next season. Though Friedman said there’s no done deal yet, he added it would take quite the breakdown between now and McLellan officially signing a contract for the former San Jose Sharks coach not to be behind the Edmonton bench next season. Read more