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Capitals Part Ways With Coach Laviolette After Missing Playoffs

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Peter Laviolette will not keep his job as the coach of Washington Capitals because the team missed to get into the playoffs for the first time in almost 10 years. Capitals and Laviolette decided to end their relationship, a day after their season ended. This was decided by General Manager Brian MacLellan and also Laviolette’s contract was set to finish after coaching this season alone without any extension.

“We are really thankful for Peter’s hard work and commitment to our organization these last three years,” MacLellan said in a statement. “Peter is an amazing person who has been a great representative of our team with maturity and helped us manage hard times while he was our coach. We wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

Laviolette, 58, was the coach of the Capitals team for three years. During these three seasons, they were able to make it to the playoffs every year until this season when a lot of injuries and bad luck stopped them in their tracks. Too many players were hurt and couldn’t play anymore.

When Laviolette’s contract status and negotiations to keep him around came up at training camp, neither he nor MacLellan wanted to talk about it and preferred waiting for the season to end before making any decisions.

The situation does not look good. The team’s performance at the end was really bad, including failing to hold on to a three-goal lead in their last game.

Coach Laviolette had led Washington during regular season games and finished with lots of wins (115) and tied games (78). He was also responsible for taking his old teams to compete for the title: Carolina in 2006, Philadelphia in 2010 and Nashville in 2017.

But since Barry Trotz raised the Stanley Cup trophy for Washington in 2018, they haven’t won any series yet.

MacLellan, Dick Patrick (president) and Ted Leonsis (owner) will now start looking for the 8th coach that Alex Ovechkin has had during his NHL career. Ovechkin needs only 73 more goals to break Wayne Gretzky’s record. He’ll be 38 years old in September and he still has 3 years left on his contract.

Billionaire Ted Leonsis has promised Alex Ovechkin that he won’t try flipping the whole roster around while he’s trying to break Wayne Gretzky’s record. He will hire a new coach to keep up the Capitals’ winning streak with an older roster, but there’s not much room for big changes because of long-term contracts and restrictions on how much money can be spent as set by the NHL salary cap.

The front office of the NHL team is thinking about hiring either Spencer Carbery or Jeff Halpern as the first-time NHL head coach. Spencer Carbery is currently working with Toronto and Jeff Halpern has won two championships when he worked with Tampa Bay under Jon Cooper’s guidance.

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