The Ottawa Senators have hired Troy Mann to lead their AHL team for at least the next two seasons. Mann was most recently employed by the Washington Capitals organization, where he was the head coach of the Hershey Bears for four seasons. Mann’s younger brother Trent is currently the Senators’ chief amateur scout. GM Pierre Dorion released a statement about the hiring:
Troy is a talented, experienced head coach who has a track record of developing players. Troy is a teacher and a winner. We feel that he’s a great fit for both Belleville and for our organization and will able to impart on our young players the values of leadership, character and chemistry that are so important to us. We’re excited to welcome him to the Senators and looking forward to introducing him to the fans in Belleville.
Mann led Hershey to a 162-102-40 record during his time as head coach of the Bears, and even took them to the Calder Cup Finals in 2016. Unfortunately the team struggled this season and ended up near the bottom of the league, leading to his firing. The Capitals trash is the Senators treasure though, as he’ll try to turn around a Belleville franchise that was even worse this year.
Ottawa needs to start developing more internal talent as they try to replace players like Kyle Turris, Derick Brassard, Mike Hoffman (and perhaps Erik Karlsson), all of whom have left (or could leave) the organization over the last year. Adding Brady Tkachuk to their prospect pool was a good start, but without a first-round pick next season they’ll be relying on Mann to develop some more underrated prospects that are currently in the system.