Rick Bowness will be returning as head coach of Winnipeg Jets next season, confirms GM Kevin Cheveldayoff

Vegas Golden Knights v Winnipeg Jets - Game Three
Rick Bowness will be returning as head coach of Winnipeg Jets next season, confirms GM Kevin Cheveldayoff

In a surprising announcement, Jets General Manager Kevin Cheveldayoff confirmed that Rick Bowness will return as head coach of the Winnipeg Jets for 2023-24. The news was welcomed by Jets fans, who had been anxiously waiting to find out who would be leading the team going forward. TSN on Twitter updated the fans with the announcement.

"Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff announces that Rick Bowness will return behind the Jets bench."

Bowness, who previously served as an assistant coach with the Jets, has been coaching in the NHL for more than a decade. He has a wealth of experience and a reputation for developing young talent. Bowness also has a keen eye for strategy and is known for his ability to adapt his coaching style to different situations.

Despite the disappointment of the season's playoffs, Bowness has expressed his determination to lead the Jets to success. He was disappointed with how the team played in Game 5 against the Vegas Golden Knights. He was vocal about his disappointment with the team's lack of pushback and pride throughout the season.

“Their better players were so much better than our players tonight and it’s not even close”

The Jets had a strong start to the season, holding the top spot in the Western Conference for a time, but ultimately stumbled down the stretch. They were unable to last more than five games in the playoffs, leading to questions about the team's roster and coaching.

A look at Rick Bowness' career as a coach

Rick Bowness, a Canadian professional ice hockey coach, has had a long and successful career in the NHL. He began his coaching career as a player-coach with the Sherbrooke Jets, the AHL affiliate of the original Winnipeg Jets, in the 1982-83 season. Although the team struggled that season, Bowness continued on as an assistant coach with the Jets the following seasons.

In the 1985-86 season, Rick Bowness made headlines when he was fined $500 and suspended for three games after punching Calgary forward Tim Hunter in the head during a brawl.

Despite the incident, Bowness continued on with the Jets, remaining as an assistant coach under new head coach Dan Maloney in the 1986-87 season. That season, the Jets had a successful run, finishing in third place in the Smythe Division and making it to the Smythe Division final before being swept by the Edmonton Oilers.

After the 1986-87 season, Rick Bowness became the first head coach of the Moncton Hawks for the 1987-88 season. The expansion team finished in sixth place in the Northern Division and failed to make the playoffs. However, Bowness continued on with the Hawks at the start of the 1988-89 season, leading the team to a 28-20-5 record in 53 games.

Rick Bowness was then promoted to head coach of the Winnipeg Jets in February 1989, after the team fired Dan Maloney. Bowness coached his first NHL game on February 9, 1989, and earned his first NHL victory on February 17, 1989.

However, the Jets finished the season with an 8-17-3 record under Bowness and missed the playoffs. After the season, the Jets hired Bob Murdoch as their new head coach and Bowness left the organization.

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Edited by Neha
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