Jackets fire Hitchcock
COLUMBUS, Ohio (CP) — The Columbus Blue Jackets have fired coach Ken Hitchcock less than two weeks before he’ll step behind the bench as an assistant with Team Canada.
The NHL team made the move Wednesday, promoting assistant Claude Noel on an interim basis.
Hitchcock had coached in Columbus s in c e November 2006 and led the franchise to its first playoff berth last spring. However, the team has been stuck in a rut for much of this season and rumours about his job security had lingered over the past couple months.
“ This season has been very disappointing for the Blue Jackets organization and our fans and the responsibility for that rests with all of us from management to the coaches and players,” GM Scott Howson said in a statement.
“Hitch worked tirelessly to build an identity for this team that was missing before he arrived and deserves a great deal of credit for those efforts. He earned and received the opportunity to turn things around this season, but unfortunately that has not happened.”
Kyle MacDonald of the host Breton Education Centre Bears, left, gets set to go to the net, guarded by Anthony Dugas of the École Secondaire Roger-Comtois Patriotes of Loretteville, Que., during New Waterford Coal Bowl Classic play at BEC gym, Wednesday evening. BEC won, 78-55.