That’s the sort of history he’d love to repeat. With a different ending, of course.
Sutter is once again among the hat-trick of nominees for the NHL’s coach-of-the-year nod, a no-brainer after he guided the Calgary Flames to a remarkable turnaround in 2021-22. With the 63-year-old at the helm, the Flames finished atop the Pacific Division standings at 50-21-11 and re-established their reputation as one of the most stingy squads on the circuit.
Andrew Brunette of the Florida Panthers and Gerard Gallant of the New York Rangers are the other finalists.
The Jolly Rancher was last up for the Jack Adams Award in 2003-04, during his first stint as skipper at the Saddledome. The Flames made a fairytale run that spring to Game 7 of the championship series, although the Tampa Bay Lightning would ultimately hoist the prize.
Sutter, now a two-time Stanley Cup champion, is currently focused on steering the Flames past the Edmonton Oilers in a long-overdue playoff renewal of the Battle of Alberta. Wednesday’s Game 1 of the second-round provincial slugfest was hardly a defensive duel, with the Saddledome hosts earning a 9-6 victory.