It has previously been reported the NJ coaching candidates were Alain Nasreddine (incumbent), Gerard Gallant, Peter Laviolette, John Stevens and a "mystery candidate." Hearing that is NYR assistant Lindy Ruff, head coach in BUF (1997-2013) and DAL (2013-17).— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) June 23, 2020
Ruff, 60, has been on the Rangers’ bench since the 2017-2018 season when he was hired to replace Jeff Beukeboom and run the team’s defense and penalty kill. The results haven’t been great, with the team giving up high levels of quality shots and forcing major workloads upon the goaltenders. Many individuals also regressed under his watch, most prominently Brady Skjei, Kevin Shattenkirk, Jacob Trouba, and Brendan Smith. Of course, Ruff is not solely responsible for those players’ issues. Furthermore, the likes of Adam Fox, Tony DeAngelo, and Ryan Lindgren have taken major steps in their careers.