Coaching Hot-Seat: All John MacLean Edition

If the New Jersey Devils Don't Improve Soon, Is John MacLean's Job in Danger? | Bleacher Report
Is John MacLean feeling the heat already? [...] GM Lou Lamoriello is no stranger to bold moves behind the bench. He fired head coach Claude Julien in 2007 when the team led their division and was second in the conference towards the end of the year and took charge himself, unhappy with the team's "lack of readiness to challenge for the Stanley Cup." He took the careful approach with MacLean, allowing him to groom himself as a coach as an assistant and AHL coach before giving him the reins, perhaps a year or two earlier than planned after Lemaire's surprising retirement.  [...] MacLean's Devils have looked sluggish in their first six games. They have managed only 10 goals and won just one of those games, none at home. For a team with three solid lines of offensive contributors, that kind of production is inexplicable.

Firing Coach John MacLean Wouldn't Solve New Jersey Devils' Problems - Instant Opinion -
The Bruins handed the Devils their fourth loss in six games on Sunday, and some people are already calling for coach John MacLean’s perfectly shaved head. [...] The Devils should certainly be concerned with their effort so far, but it’s much too soon to start panicking. The real problem with the 1-4-1 Devils is [...] that the Devils' roster is not set. The Devils are still over the cap, and there are too many players who know that they could be shipped out at a moment’s notice. [...] There's also the fact that the Devils have a young lineup, with five rookies (two forwards and three defensemen). [...] MacLean coached most of these rookies in the Devils’ AHL affiliate last season and he knows which ones are ready to see time in the NHL. Since the Devils will have to have a few rookie players on the team to stay under the cap, who better to take charge than the coach who knows them best?

I agree that the coach is not the problem in New Jersey. I don't even think Lamoriello thinks the coach is the problem. But firing him, from Lou's perspective, may be the solution. Well, not the solution. Just the latest short-term fix in a series. Given MacLean's history with, and loyalty to, the organization, I would hope Lou would give him a longer leash. My guess is, the leash is exactly as long as the Devils' up-coming road trip.


One home game. Seven on the road. Any worse than, say, 4-3-1 over those eight games, bringing the Devils back up to within sight of .500, and MacLean should probably start looking over his shoulder for Ken Hitchcock.

Or will a big, cap-correcting trade come first?