This is no April Fools Day joke.
The Avalanche web site just announced that Coach Joel Quenneville will not receive a new contract from Colorado:
The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that Joel Quenneville will not return to coach the team next season.
"After meeting with Joel, we mutually agreed that the best decision for both parties involved is to go separate ways," said Avalanche Executive Vice President & General Manager Francois Giguere. "On behalf of the organization, I want to thank Joel for his years of service and wish him the best in his coaching career."
More to come.
UPDATE: As PPP acknowledged in the diaries, this has major implications for the world's dwindling kitten population. Obviously, with the departure of Q, we will have to retire the Power Play Kittens meme, and come up with something equally vicious and mean-spirited for next season.
UPDATE 2: Adam Proteau at the Hockey News says Coach Q will probably have no trouble finding a new bench to stand behind in the NHL. Good luck to him.
UPDATE 3: From the AP and ESPN:
Giguere doesn't have a timeline for when he'll hire a new coach, but he does have one requirement -- an up-tempo philosophy. He wants the Avalanche to play with more speed.
"We've always been an organization that's been a puck possession, upbeat, high tempo, high energy, attacking [team]," Giguere said. "That's the way the Avalanche have always played and I think that's the way I foresee this team continuing to play."
As evident from the comments, it's clear that we're all extremely happy with Giguere right now. It's obvious that our concerns this season were shared by him every step of the way. We all knew Coach Q's style of coaching wasn't right for the Colorado Avalanche, and the general manager was right there with us.
Sandy Clough, please feel free to email Mile High Hockey (or create a user account) and let us know how stupid we are.
UPDATE 4: Adrian Dater got some comments from Patrick Roy about the departure of Quenneville, suggesting that perhaps he could be a candidate for the job. Says Roy:
"Am I interested? Right now I am very happy in Quebec with the Remparts. I really haven't thought about one day making the move to the NHL. Right now this is only a rumor or speculation," Roy told RDS.
But Roy seemed to leave a little wiggle room that he might be interested.
"We'll see what's going to happen. Francois Giguere will certainly have a list of candidates that he would like to meet."
I'm thinking Patrick Roy is probably 1) not ready to coach in the NHL and 2) not right for the Avalanche at this point, but who knows what could happen? I'm not a big fan of putting Roy behind the bench, whatever that's worth.
UPDATE 5: Bernie Lincicome finishes off his last bit of credibility with this howler of an article, which includes such gems as this:
In a hockey season with enough man-hours lost to injury to overcrowd an outpatient ward, Quenneville was Mr. Fix-It, armed with spackle and spit, keeping a competitive team on the ice and, somehow, a reinterested Jose Theodore in goal.
It was one of the great coaching jobs of any year, and for that, Quenneville gets the door.
He and Sandy must hang out.
RECENT Q-RELATED POSTS:
Giguere Flies To Worlds, Maybe To Woo Burns (May 9)
Coach Q Keeps Losing Rooms (May 8)
Hmmm, Interesting... (May 7)
The Ax Rarely Falls In Denver, For What It's Worth (May 6)
All Quiet On The Coach Q Front (May 5)