It’s no secret that Leafs fans are out buying museum tickets for Dougie Hamilton, the best free agent on the market this summer — or at the very least best defenseman. A local boy, the dominant right-shot defenseman has been a white whale for fans ever since they traded his draft pick for Phil Kessel. Now, after nine long years, they might finally have the chance to bring him home.
As free agency approaches, the Leafs have added their new defensive coach for this season, an experienced man by the name of Dean Chynoweth (pronounced “SHIN-owth”). He comes from Carolina, where he has coached Hamilton for the past three seasons. This connection is reminding Leafs fans of 2019 when the personal trainer for John Tavares, Wes Clark, was hired as the assistant director of player personnel days before Tavares signed his blockbuster contract with the Leafs. Could this be history repeating itself?
Under Chynoweth, Hamilton has had some of his best offensive and defensive seasons. He’s consistently been in the 57-58% shot share range, with scoring chances and expected goals both in the same range. He’s gone from being the fourth guy in Carolina to the top minute-eater for the team in the three years since the trade with Calgary. The big reason for this is the power play, but also a growth in defensive trust that has lead to regular minutes on the penalty kill. Clearly Rod Brind'amour believes in Hamilton, and Chynoweth by extension too.
Come home, Dougie, you’ll love it here.
Various Leafs and Branches
Maple Leafs name Dean Chynoweth Assistant Coach | by: Arvind
Farewell, powerkill. pic.twitter.com/LHi3WTqWFZ— Corey Sznajder (@ShutdownLine) July 12, 2021
Imagining Tyler Bertuzzi as a Maple Leaf | by: Katya
Who Vegas drafted and what they did with them | by: Katya
2021 NHL Draft Profile: Brent Johnson | by: Brigstew
Senators Name Pierre McGuire Senior Vice-President of Player Development | by: Silver Seven Sens
In Ottawa Senators news:— Jonathan Willis (@JonathanWillis) July 12, 2021
"Dorion is also heading into the last year of his contract as (GM) of the club. If there are any issues in the months ahead, it stands to reason that McGuire could be waiting in the wings as a possible in-house replacement."https://t.co/qClSDSoBVB
TRADE: Oilers Acquire Duncan Keith From Chicago For Caleb Jones And A Third Round Pick | by: Copper and Blue
my sources in the future have obtained a sneak preview pic.twitter.com/aKiSy7SfyH— Acting the Fulemin (@ATFulemin) July 12, 2021
Hockey Men don’t watch the games, they just feel them with their guts.
It's like a cringe tiktok that keeps getting worse. pic.twitter.com/vV1u7EkZ3j— Corey Sznajder (@ShutdownLine) July 13, 2021
In other coaching news:
Rangers have hired Gord Murphy, Mike Kelly as assistants to join Gallant's staff, Post has learned. Both have prior experience with Gallant. Blueshirts still seeking third assistant.— Larry Brooks (@NYP_Brooksie) July 12, 2021
The Preds are announcing something tomorrow:
The #Preds will hold a “major press conference” tomorrow morning at 11 a.m. CT.— Brooks Bratten (@brooksbratten) July 12, 2021
And the party continues:
Okay, now he’s not even trying to hide it. Vasilevskiy’s new mask is CLEARLY illegal. pic.twitter.com/UcRtFYpQsZ— Gregory Balloch (@GregBalloch) July 12, 2021