Predators hire Andrew Brunette as head coach
The Nashville Predators named Andrew Brunette as their new head coach Wednesday, replacing John Hynes.
Brunette was nominated for the Jack Adams Award last season after piloting the Florida Panthers through their Presidents' Trophy-winning campaign in his first year as an NHL head coach.
He served as an associate coach for the New Jersey Devils in 2022-23.
Incoming Nashville general manager Barry Trotz announced the firings of Hynes and assistant coach Dan Lambert on Tuesday.
Brunette has some experience within the Predators organization. He played for Nashville in 1998-99 and is credited with scoring the franchise's first-ever goal.
The 49-year-old netted 11 goals and 20 assists in 77 contests as a Predator and amassed 733 points in 1,110 career NHL games.
Brunette stepped in as Panthers head coach on an interim basis after Joel Quenneville resigned in October 2021. Brunette had been an assistant coach on Quenneville's staff since 2019.
Florida dominated the regular season but was ultimately swept by the Tampa Bay Lightning in the second round. After falling short in the postseason, the Panthers moved on from Brunette and hired Paul Maurice.
The Panthers went 51-18-6 under Brunette's direction.
Hynes had one year remaining on his contract with the Predators. They finished the 2022-23 campaign fifth in the Central Division with a 42-32-8 record and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2013-14.
In four seasons as head coach in Nashville, Hynes put together a record of 134-96-18. Hynes' Predators never advanced past the opening round of the playoffs.
"John Hynes is a good man and a good hockey coach," Trotz said in a press release. "He did an outstanding job after the trade deadline with our team, especially with our young players, and he is a well-prepared, hard-working coach who will continue to grow in the NHL.
"After our year-end meetings and some additional evaluation, it was time to change the voice and time to go in a different direction."
Brunette will be the first head coach of Trotz's tenure as general manager. The Predators announced in February that former executive David Poile was stepping down from the position after a 26-year run at the helm.