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Former Canucks PP coach Newell Brown hired by Kings; Habs have called on Martin Necas: Around the League

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Photo credit:© Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
Tyson Cole
16 days ago
Welcome back to Around the League — the column here at CanucksArmy where we deliver you news and notes from around the National Hockey League — oftentimes through a Vancouver Canucks-tinted lens! 
It’s been a while, dear readers!
We’ve got a couple of news and notes to get into, and as you can tell by the title, most of them have to do with coaching!
Newell Brown hired by LA Kings
On Thursday, the Los Angeles Kings announced that they had hired former Canucks power play coach Newell Brown. Brown first joined the Canucks during the 2010-11 season, and after departing following 2012-13, he rejoined the organization as one of Travis Green’s assistant coaches from 2017-2021.
Brown spent the past three seasons with the Anaheim Ducks, and is now heading up the I-5 to join the Kings. Brown has been an assistant coach in the NHL since the 1996-97 campaign, beginning with a two-year stint behind the bench for the Chicago Blackhawks. In total, Brown brings 27 seasons of coaching experience at the NHL level to the Kings.
The Canucks power play had its ups and downs this season, and given the Canucks’ ineffectiveness on the man advantage during the playoffs, fans and media have certainly begun to ask the question of whether or not the Canucks should bring in an assistant coach to help focus on the power play. This past season, head coach Rick Tocchet served as the first power play unit’s coach, while Daniel and Henrik Sedin handled duties with the second unit, despite not being on the bench during games.
Montreal Canadiens calling on Martin Necas
One of the hottest names on the trade list for this offseason has to be Martin Necas. Heck, he’s even come up in serious rumours surrounding the Canucks. But a new team has entered the conversation: the Montreal Canadiens. The Athletic’s Pierre LeBrun confirmed on the RDS Hockey 360 that Canadiens General Manager (GM) Kent Hughes called the Carolina Hurricanes to inquire about their young restricted free agents.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the Canadiens called on Necas. They’re very much a one-line team, with Cole Caufield, Nick Suzuki and Juraj Slafkovsky finding chemistry in the back half of the season. Quite honestly, the Canadiens need more than one top-six forward to add to their group.
Their current second line is Brendan Gallagher, Alex Newhook and Joel Armia and no offence to them, but that doesn’t scream second line on a contending team to me. Granted, they do have Kirby Dach, who is hopefully returning from an ACL tear this season. But he’s going to need some help, especially in his first year of recovery. Adding a speedy winger who can drive play alongside him who can drive play could be a perfect fit.
However, there’s a history between these two teams revolving around restricted free agents. Montreal gave Sebastian Aho an offer sheet that wasn’t taken too well in Hurricane land. Eventually, they got their revenge by stealing Jesperi Kotkaniemi from under their nose with an offer sheet a few years later.
It would be a surprise if these two became trade partners after this feud, but if you’re a Canadiens fan, you should be encouraged that your GM is making calls when young players become available.
Ottawa Senators interviewing Mike Yeo
Former Canucks assistant coach Mike Yeo and the team mutually parted ways earlier this offseason. Yeo wasted no time getting back out there trying to find his next landing spot. Chek TV’s Rick Dhaliwal shined some light on where that might be:
“Mike Yeo was interviewed by Travis Green and I’m not hearing Mike Yeo to Toronto. There was speculation with [Craig] Berube, but I’m not hearing that. I think Mike Yeo in Ottawa with Travis Green makes a lot of sense. If it happens, I won’t be surprised.”
If Yeo does get hired in Ottawa, that will mark his fifth job as a bench boss in the NHL. He debuted for the Minnesota Wild in 2011 and since then has had stints with the St. Louis Blues, Philadelphia Flyers and Vancouver Canucks.
This leaves only Adam Foote as a full-time assistant coach behind the Canucks bench, and the search for Yeo’s replacement officially begins.

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