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Avalanche dismiss Roy-era bench staff

In the first big organizational shake-up of the offseason, Colorado parted ways with a handful of assistant coaches.

2016 Coors Light Stadium Series - Detroit Red Wings v Colorado Avalanche Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

If you can remember back to last August, you might recall Patrick Roy left his post as the Avalanche head coach rather suddenly. It left general manager Joe Sakic in the unenviable position of selecting a new head coach who wouldn’t be able to select his own staff.

So Jared Bednar went to work with Roy’s. And the results were, uh, less than ideal.

But that won’t be the case headed into the 2017-18 season. The organization announced today that it would no longer retain the services of assistants Tim Army and Dave Farrish. Also parting ways is 30-year-veteran goalie coach Francois Allaire after season of embarrassing play in net by a number of contributors.

Tim Army was often favorably viewed among players and fans, frequently seen spending lots of time after practice working with young players and managing the bench during games. He had survived two previous coaching changes, having served under both Joe Sacco and Roy. But after the crushing lows of last season, a new voice in the room was almost mandatory.

Dave Farrish was a longtime NHL assistant for the Anaheim Ducks and Toronto Maple Leafs, experience Patrick Roy sought prior to the 2015-16 season. Farrish’s tenure at each of his stops, however, was less highly regarded, with a reputation for insisting on antiquated defensive philosophies. The decision was lamented by discerning fans at the time and today’s announcement is sure to receive commensurate praise.

Who’s left? Foremost is defensive assistant Nolan Pratt, who had previously served on Bednar’s staff with the AHL Lake Erie Monsters. With Farrish out of the picture, Pratt will be able to run his fast and aggressive defensive system without a dissenting voice in the room.

Video coordinator Brett Heimlich also survives this round of cuts.


Will new assistants improve Colorado’s fortunes next season?

This poll is closed

  • 60%
    Absolutely. Farrish, et al. were bigger drags than we probably even know!
    (310 votes)
  • 5%
    No way. Their poor record is due to the talent on the roster.
    (28 votes)
  • 34%
    Meh. Difference will be marginal either way,
    (178 votes)
516 votes total Vote Now