David Quinn replacements: Top 5 candidates for vacant San Jose Sharks head coach job

NHL: St. Louis Blues at San Jose Sharks
David Quinn replacements: Top 5 candidates for vacant San Jose Sharks head coach job

The San Jose Sharks and David Quinn have parted ways. The club announced Quinn’s dismissal as head coach following a disastrous 19-win season.

Hired in 2022, Quinn recorded a 41-98-25 mark during his tenure in San Jose. Following a record-tying 0-11 start, David Quinn spent the entire season on the hot seat.

Now, the Sharks will be looking to fill the head coaching vacancy left by David Quinn with someone who can turn the ship around. The following candidates come to mind as potential solutions behind the bench in San Jose.

Top 5 candidates to replace David Quinn in San Jose

#1: Claude Julien

Former Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens coach Claude Julien would provide seasoned leadership and experience behind the bench for the Sharks. He last coached in 2021, leaving his duties following health complications.

Julien boasts a championship on his resume, leading the 2011 Bruins to the Cup. He also won the Jack Adams Award in 2009.

The 64-year-old is the type of old-school coach who could spark a significant turnaround in San Jose. With a core of younger players, Julien could mold the Sharks in his image as the team emerges from its rebuild.

#2: Jay Leach

Seattle Kraken's assistant coach, Jay Leach, has garnered interest as a potential head coaching option. The New York Rangers were reportedly interested in hiring Leach. However, the job eventually went to Peter Laviolette.

Leach would be an interesting replacement for David Quinn, considering his connection to the Sharks’ organization as a player, who suited up for 28 games with San Jose during the 2009-2010 season. He also played for the Sharks’ AHL affiliate in Worcester.

Leach, 44, brings savvy leadership and youth to the rebuilding Sharks. His defensive-minded approach could greatly benefit San Jose as a more structured playing style could help the club improve on this year’s 19 wins.

#3: Travis Green

Travis Green is serving as the interim coach of the New Jersey Devils following Lindy Ruff’s firing this year. Green is a seasoned coach, leading a young Vancouver Canucks. However, he was fired from Vancouver for the club’s lack of success.

Green has had success at the AHL and WHL levels, reaching a Calder Cup Final while coaching in the AHL. With the New Jersey head coaching position up in the air, Green could slide into a more permanent position with the Sharks. San Jose would get a veteran coach who knows how to deal with young, rebuilding teams.

#4: Kirk Muller

Kirk Muller is an assistant coach with the Washington Capitals. He previously led the Carolina Hurricanes from 2011 to 2014, racking up an 80-80-27 record. While his stint in Carolina didn’t go as well as expected, Muller has remained in the mix for several head coaching positions.

Muller could become an exciting replacement for David Quinn as he’s been part of several organizations, briefly taking over for Claude Julien in Montreal following Julien’s health issues. Muller was also an assistant in Calgary under Darryl Sutter.

On the whole, the rebuilding Sharks would benefit from Muller’s experience under several renowned coaches. Considering Muller’s eagerness to prove he’s worthy of a head coaching position, Muller and the Sharks could be a good match.

#5: Dave Lowry

Dave Lowry is an assistant in Seattle. Like Jay Leach, Lowry has worked closely with Kraken head coach Dave Hakstol, focusing on a defensive-minded approach.

Unlike Leach, Lowry has held a head coaching position. Lowry took over for Paul Maurice in 2021 following Maurice’s resignation from the Winnipeg Jets. However, Lowry did not remain in Winnipeg and eventually moved on to Seattle.

Lowry brings something David Quinn did not: More than 1,000 games of NHL experience, in addition to experience as an assistant with the Los Angeles Kings and WHL coaching experience.

The 59-year-old Lowry could provide the leadership, experience and patience needed to restructure the Sharks' jumbled roster following Quinn's departure.

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