Me: Welcome to the Puck Under the Sun Rinkside Chat. Today’s guest is twitter user @kgpanthers. We will be talking about the new head coach of the Panthers Bob Boughner. So what do you think of this hiring?
KG: Anybody with the nickname Boogieman has to be a winner.
Me: Unlike last year when we had Tom Rowe as head coach, Boughner doesn’t seem to be a fan of analytics. In what way do you think this will impact the locker room?
KG: One thing that I heard on his radio interview today was a little bit subtle but the word was fun. He wants the guys to have fun playing and I feel that was lost last year. As far as analytics, he mentioned he does look at them, but he typically knows what they will say by observing his players play. He did mention unlike baseball where analytics has been most successful, hockey is different because of it’s fast and fluid play. Analytics in hockey has not been as successful as in baseball which is a non-fluid sport.
Me: Which player do you think will play the best under Boughner?
KG: Hopefully it will be Aaron Ekblad. He is almost the face of the Panthers and he needs to recover from a poor season last year that was arguably plagued by a series of concussions from years past. He saw a sports psychologist which hopefully was helpful. This coaching selection should help his confidence as well. I believe the Panthers will go as far as Ekblad and Sasha Barkov can take them.
Me: I agree with you on that. What do you think Boughner’s approach to offense will be, seeing as he coached the defense in San Jose?
KG: I think he will want the defense involved offensively. However, I hope there will be discipline involved with the defensemen so we don’t give up a lot of odd man rushes like we did last season. I also hope he is able to get more guys to the net for cheap sloppy goals. Hopefully he’ll have his team be strong in front of the net defensively and be strong in front of the opposing team’s net offensively.
Me: Do you see a lot of similarities between him and Gallant?
KG: At this point I don’t know a lot about him. Gallant was very even keel with the media, no matter if the team was on a losing streak or a winning streak. I do believe Boughner is a little more outgoing. However, coaching wise we will see. I am not sure if he is a player’s coach or not.
Me: What type of assistants should Boughner look for to add to his staff?
KG: Definetly the powerplay.
Me: Do you think Boughner’s lack of NHL Head Coaching Experience will help or hurt him?
KG: Only time will tell.
(End of Interview)
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