The Colorado Avalanche find themselves in need of a coach, as Patrick Roy has announced that he is stepping down as coach and vice president of hockey operations for the organization.
In a statement released Thursday, Roy, who had a year remaining on his contract, said that though he is saddened to leave the Avalanche, he has put a lot of thought into the decision to step away from the team and is “fully comfortable” with his choice. However, in thanking the players and fans for their support, he made it clear that the departure has to do with his inability to have a larger say in the direction of the franchise.
“I have thought long and hard over the course of the summer about how I might improve this team to give it the depth it needs and bring it to a higher level,” Roy said in a statement. “To achieve this, the vision of the coach and VP-Hockey Operations needs to be perfectly aligned with that of the organization. He must also have a say in the decisions that impact the team's performance. These conditions are not currently met.”
When Roy came to the Avalanche, he did so after an eight-year tenure working as the GM, coach and owner of the Quebec Remparts. In the position, Roy had control over the franchise and led the team to a Memorial Cup during the 2005-06 season. When coming to Colorado, Roy didn’t have final say on personnel decisions, and it’s evident he wanted to have a larger say.
In his first season with the Avalanche in 2013-14, Roy led the team to a Central Division title and a massive jump up the standings. They had finished last in the Western Conference the year prior, but second in Roy’s first season behind the bench. The Avalanche would flame out of the post-season in the first round and have since failed to get back to the playoffs, but Roy would go on to win the Jack Adams Award as coach of the year.
Roy’s record with the Avalanche over the course of his three seasons was 130-92-24, but each season has been progressively worse. Colorado went from 112 points in his first campaign to 90 points in his second season to 82 points this past season.
No replacement has been named by the Avalanche.
Want more in-depth features and expert analysis on the game you love? Subscribe to The Hockey News magazine.