The NHL continues to release finalists for its regular season major awards, this time nominating the three men who are battling for the Jack Adams Award, given to the coach who has “contributed the most to the success of his team”. Last year’s winner was Bruce Cassidy of the Boston Bruins, but we’ll have a new name to engrave this time.
Quenneville, 62, is certainly not familiar with the trophy but has held it for quite some time. The veteran NHL coach took home the award in 2000 with the St.Louis Blues and was runner-up in 2013 with the Chicago Blackhawks. Only two finalist appearances are surprising for a man who quickly closes in 1,000 career wins. Quenneville is second all-time behind only Scotty Bowman in coaching classes with 962 wins in the regular season and has won the Stanley Cup three times in Chicago. He would be the first of the Panthers Jack Adams winner if he takes it home after the 37-14-5 season the team recorded in 2020-21.
Evason will try to stay on his path despite having less than 82 games under his belt as an NHL coach. The 56-year-old replaced him Bruce Boudreau last season and now has a .669 win percentage in his 68 games behind the Minnesota bench. While the addition of Kirill Kaprizov certainly helped, Evason transformed the Wild into an exciting and competitive team that led the Vegas Golden Knights to seven games in the first round. Evason is only signed for next season but will soon prove his worth as an answer in Minnesota.
Speaking of contracts, it’s all the buzz around Brind’Amour these days, even when he gets a nomination for Jack Adams. The Hurricane’s head coach isn’t set to sign up for next season and this award is just another indication of how well he’s done in his brief stint behind the Carolina bench. After taking the lead in 2018, the Hurricanes went 120-66-20 in the regular season reaching the playoffs every three years and the Conference Finals once. The 50-year-old made an exceptional start with his young group in Carolina and could be considered the favorite for this award.