The clichés follow Ken Hitchcock.
His players hate to play for him. His style doesn’t work with today’s players.
And this old chestnut: He has a “shelf life.” Like every coach in Edmonton hasn’t had a shelf life.
As news broke this past few days that Hitchcock has two years remaining after this one on his contract with the Oilers, the possibility suddenly existed that he could return as head coach next season.
Now, a new general manager will be hired, and we’d almost guarantee that his choice as a head coach will not be a 67-year-old who won his only Stanley Cup 19 months after Connor McDavid was born.
But take a look at Edmonton’s roster, and tell me that a coach that has a 9-5-3 record in his last 17 games isn’t doing a fantastic job. The record, however, isn’t everything.
What about the clichés? The shelf life? The players’ feelings?
We went out to define what it is that Hitchcock does to earn his reputation. What are the traits that make Hitch Hitch.