The Ottawa Senators fired D.J. Smith and hired Jacques Martin as interim coach and Hall of Famer Daniel Alfredsson as an assistant.
Senators Undergo Major Coaching Changes to Boost Team Performance
After Michael Andlauer took over three months ago, the team’s management has changed several times. Longtime general manager Pierre Dorion was fired and hockey operations president Steve Staios was hired. Staios, temporary GM, replaced Smith 12 days after hiring Martin as a senior adviser.
The Senators have lost five of their previous six games and are last in the Eastern Conference with just the Chicago Blackhawks fewer points. The new coach hopes to give players optimism and improve the team’s consistency, detail, and organization. Staios stressed the need for progress and that the team has decided to improve.
As interim head coach, Jacques Martin will return to the bench after nine seasons with the Senators. Martin, 71, has 17 seasons of NHL head-coaching experience and won the Stanley Cup twice as an assistant with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2016 and 2017. Steve Staios believed Martin’s detail, structure, organization, and discipline could fix the team’s problems.
Senators Add Alfredsson to Coaching Staff in Major Shake-Up
Daniel Alfredsson, the former captain and Hall of Famer, will return as an assistant coach. Andlauer’s promise to bring Alfredsson back is fulfilled. Alfredsson will coach Tuesday against the Coyotes despite his initial reluctance to travel full-time. Staios praised Alfredsson’s dedication to the club and organization.
D.J. Smith joins Jay Woodcroft, Dean Evason, and Craig Berube as the fourth coach fired this season. Smith leaves in his final year after four seasons without a playoff appearance for the Senators. The coaching change shows a shared responsibility, and Staios acknowledged Smith’s and others’ struggles.
The Senators’ coaching change was strategic to improve performance and address weaknesses. The coaching staff hopes to gain expertise, organization, and responsibility from Jacques Martin and Daniel Alfredsson.