The Florida Panthers announced today that Mike Kitchen, Andrew Brunette and former captain Derek MacKenzie have been named assistant coaches on Head Coach Joel Quenneville’s staff for the 2019-2020 season. Robb Tallas will return for his 11th season as the Panthers Goaltending Coach.
The 63-year-old Kitchen is back for a second stint in Sunrise and has over 25 years of NHL coaching experience having served as an assistant coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs (1989-90 to 2003-04), St. Louis Blues (1998-99 to 2003-04), Florida Panthers (2007-08 to 2009-10) and Chicago Blackhawks (2010-11 to 2016-17). He served as head coach of the Blues from 2003-04 to 2006-07.
Brunette, a long-time NHL player, has spent the previous seven seasons with the Minnesota Wild organization serving in multiple different capacities including Director of Player Personnel, Assistant General Manager, Assistant Coach and Special Assistant to the General Manager.
The 37-year-old MacKenzie completed his final NHL season in 2018-19 with the Panthers after a season-ending shoulder injury. Throughout 2018-19, while recovering, MacKenzie assisted the Panthers coaching staff in an unofficial capacity. The Sudbury, ON native played five seasons for the Panthers (2014-15 to 2018-19) serving as captain for two seasons (2016-17 to 2017-18). MacKenzie played a total of 304 games with Florida, producing 54 points (20G/34A).
Are you happy with the additions to Coach Q’s staff?
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Okay, but could have made better hires