The Detroit Red Wings have already filled one half of their two assistant coaching vacancies with the hiring of former Bruins assistant and former Detroit draft pick Doug Houda. They have a good idea on who they’d like to hire to fill the second opening on Jeff Blashill’s staff – former NHL head bench boss Todd Richards.
Richards, 49, is currently serving as an assistant coach for Team USA in the World Championship tournament in Russia. Detroit has received permission from the Columbus Blue Jackets, for whom Richards most recently served as head coach, to interview him once he returns from Russia.
He led Columbus to a playoff spot in 2014 and the franchise’s only playoff victories. He was relived of his duties after an 0-7 start this past season. Previously, Richards served as head coach of the Minnesota Wild, as well as an assistant with the San Jose Sharks and Pittsburgh Penguins.
Richards has an overall record of 204-183-37 as a head coach. Should he be hired in Detroit, he would likely oversee the forwards and the power play unit. His coaching experience would be a welcome addition for the power play, which struggled most of the 2015-16 Season under first year assistant coach Pat Ferschweiler.