Earlier today, there were reports indicating that Peter Laviolette and the New York Rangers had an interest in bringing in Phil Housley as an assistant coach for the team’s upcoming season, and that’s exactly what they did. Arthur Staple of The Athletic reports that Housley will indeed be joining Laviolette’s staff as an assistant coach for the Rangers.
Before the Nashville Predators brought in Laviolette prior to the 2014-15 season, Housley had actually already spent a season on Nashville’s bench. The two would go on to coach the next three years with each other, helping the Predators to the 2017 Stanley Cup Final against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Because of his success in Nashville, the Buffalo Sabres were the first team to give Housley a shot at head coaching, beginning before the 2017-18 season. In 164 games spent manning the bench in Buffalo, Housley would produce a record of 58-84-22, well outside the playoff picture in both years.
After being fired from the Sabres after the 2018-19 season, the Arizona Coyotes, along with then-head coach Rick Tocchet signed Housley to a multi-year deal. During his time with the Coyotes, which ended after the 2021-22 season, Housley was primarily used as the team’s defensive and power play coach.
Aside from Laviolette bringing in some familiar faces to his coaching staff, this is quite the shrewd move for Housley as well. Since the run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2017, Housley has failed to be on the bench of a competitive team. During those separate times with the Sabres and Coyotes, Housley did not manage to find any success at all. Joining a Rangers team that is expected to contend for the Cup next year, this will be an opportunity for Housley to gain back confidence and strengthen his resume.