2008 NHL Jack Adams Trophy
Carbonneau, Babcock, Boudreau are Coach of the Year Nominees
The Jack Adams Trophy goes to the head coach that contributed to his team’s success the most during the regular season. Mike Babcock of the Detroit Red Wings, Guy Carbonneau of the Montreal Canadiens and Bruce Boudreau of the Washington Capitals are the well deserved nominees.
Babcock has been the brain behind Detroit’s third consecutive 50+ win season, with a record of 54-21-7 as the Wings have now won a seventh straight divisional title. With the Presidents Trophy already in hand, for the team with the most regular season points, he looks to add the Jack Adams Trophy to his resume’.
I would argue that his team has more talent than any other team in the NHL and that a monkey could lead this team to the cup. Babcock is a great coach, do not get me wrong, but his machine called the Detroit Red Wings, hardly needs a oiling. His only challenge this year was the two goalie system that worked out great.
There is no way I would give it to him, but his numbers are better than anyone else’s. I just think that the Wings are dominating team with or without a coach.
Carbonneau spent his rookie coaching season leading Montreal to the top of the Eastern Conference, after the team failed to make the playoffs last year. His creativity helped the Canadiens to the league's top power play, scoring 24% of the time, and they were the highest scoring team with 262 goals. Keep in mind that Montreal did not even make the playoffs last year.
Finishing with a record of 47-25-10, Carbonneau changed the mentality in the locker room with his demeanor and was not afraid to bench players. Alexei Kovalev carried a bad attitude last season, but under Carbonneau he scored 34 more points than last year. During the season, the Habs never once lost 3 games in a row.
If I had the power to give this award away, this man (Carbonneau) would get it. Montreal went from finishing ninth last season to finishing #1 in the East under Carbonneau. He knows how to make young players better and play to their potential.
Boudreau was also a rookie NHL coach and with the help of Alexandre Ovechkin, he led the Capitals to the playoffs. He did not coach the entire season, as he replaced Glen Hanlon in November when Washington was dead last in the league. He instantly changed the team, finishing the season 37-17-7, including winning 7 in a row to edge the Southeast Division title in the final games of the season.
To his credit, Coach Boudreau does have well over 1,000 coached games under his belt at the minor-league level. He was important to the turnaround of the Caps, but I feel it was not at the level of Carbonneau’s, who deserves it more than his competition. Knowing the history of previous Jack Adams Award winners and how the voting system works, Babcock will likely win.
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Notable Mention: Coach Stevens took the Philadelphia Flyers from dead last, in 2006-2007, to the playoffs this year. The Flyers had 44 more points under Stevens than last year’s terrible performance. Also, he cleaned the team up adding 8 new players including Daniel Briere and Kimmo Timenon during the offseason while acquiring Vaclav Prospel during at the trade deadline.
Hart Trophy | Adams Trophy | Byng Trophy | Calder Trophy | Norris Trophy | Selke Trophy | Vezina Trophy
By Kevin Chaves
ProHockey-fans.com Staff Writer
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