Joel Quenneville Makes Surprising Statement About Auston Matthews And Speaks On His NHL Return

Samer Dagher
February 23, 2024  (9:02 PM)

Toronto Maple Leafs star forward Auston Matthews and former NHL head coach Joel Quenneville
Photo credit: Puck Reporter

Former NHL head coach and three time Stanley Cup champion Joel Quenneville joined the Leafs morning take podcast and spoke for the first time in a while.

Quenneville Praises Matthews And Speaks About His Potential Return To The NHL

Quenneville, known for coaching some of the league's greatest players, recognizes exceptional talent when he sees it. He reminisced about Matthews' dominance, recalling his time with the USNTDP.
He's fun to watch," Quenneville said. "I can remember when I was working with Don Granato in Chicago, who had him with the USNTDP (United States National Team Development Program), he used to say they used to beat teams pretty bad and Auston, by the third period, he used to have to tell Auston, 'okay, Auston, just take a little bit off here,' and instead of winning by 12 goals, maybe we win by seven or eight. But he had a different level of ability. Domination might be part of it."

"I love the way he shoots the puck, I like how he finds a way to get himself open. The puck follows him around as well. Wants the puck all the time. You know, he's an elite, elite player. You're talking about McDavid and himself, maybe one, two in the game. Certainly, Auston is having an outstanding year."

Quenneville praised Matthews' shooting ability, his knack for finding open spaces, and his relentless pursuit of the puck. He considers Matthews to be among the top players in the game, alongside superstar Connor McDavid.
However, Quenneville's coaching career took a hit when he resigned as head coach of the Florida Panthers due to his involvement in the Kyle Beach scandal during his time with the Chicago Blackhawks. Although the Blackhawks organization has undergone changes in personnel, including Quenneville's departure, questions linger about accountability and second chances.
Quenneville was asked about when he will return to the NHL.
Good question, I can't put a number on it

The debate continues on whether Quenneville should have the opportunity to coach in the NHL again, given the severity of the situation and his role in it.

Do you think Quenneville will back behind the bench next season?
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Joel Quenneville Makes Surprising Statement About Auston Matthews And Speaks On His NHL Return

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