‘Hunter and Gartner Banners’
courtesy of ‘clydeorama’
Early this morning the Caps dropped a major post-holiday bombshell. (Not that we didn’t see it coming.) Former Caps captain Dale Hunter has been announced as the team’s new head coach, replacing Bruce Boudreau. The change comes on the heels of a horrific November for the team, including a 5-1 loss to an overly injured Buffalo Sabres team. (A game we didn’t recap because it was that bad.)
Hunter played 19 seasons in the NHL, appearing in 1,407 games and tallying 1,020 points (323 goals). He is one of only four players to have their numbers retired by the Capitals. The new coach, recently of the London Knights in the Ontario Hockey League, will make his bench debut tomorrow night as the Caps host the St. Louis Blues.
Under his guidance, the Knights won their first Memorial Cup Championship in 2004-05. Hunter is the fastest head coach in OHL history to record 300 and 400 career bench wins; he also possesses the highest winning percentage in league history with a record of 451-189-23-24 (.691) in his 11 seasons with the team.
We wish the new coach well in jump-starting the Caps back to their winning ways; he definitely has his work cut out for him.