John Stevens, an assistant coach with the Kings for the past three seasons, is considered the front-runner for the vacant Vancouver Canucks head-coaching position and is expected to be interviewed by the team later this week, according to a report. The Globe and Mail, Canada’s national newspaper, reported on its website that the defensive-minded Stevens would be a good fit for the Canucks. Vancouver fired Alain Vigneault after the San Jose Sharks upset the Canucks in the first round of the playoffs.
According to the newspaper, Stevens could blend his no-nonsense personality and his ability to work with young players in order to be the perfect candidate to coach the talented but all too often erratic Canucks. Stevens’ work with Kings defenseman Drew Doughty and Doughty’s remarkable improvement was singled out and example.
“Whoever our next coach is will have to be able to work with young players,” Canucks general manager Mike Gillis said last week in an interview with a Vancouver radio station. “We are committed to getting younger players into our lineup and being patient enough to allow them to develop and play.”