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Gerard Gallant Comments on His Release As Golden Knights Coach

Gerard Gallant has finally commented on his being fired as head coach of the Vegas Golden Knights. Obviously, he didn’t agree with the decision.

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When the Vegas Golden Knights relieved Gerard Gallant of his coaching duties last week, reactions were swift and generally widespread that the Golden Knights had lost their minds. Why would the team move on from a coach that had taken an expansion franchise to such great heights so early in their existence as an NHL team? The expectations going forward must have been ridiculously high. For crying out loud, Gallant was named as a coach to one of the All-Star teams for this season.

Golden Knights GM Kelly McCrimmon said the team wasn’t where it needed to be. But, many wondered if newly hired coach Peter DeBoer could do any better?

Gallant has finally spoken about his firing. When he spoke to Jason Simmonds of the Journal Pioneer, he shared some of his thoughts on the decision and said it wasn’t a popular one with him. “I was an all-star coach a week and a half ago and we were in first place in our division and then things change and we lost four in a row,” said Gallant.  “They made a decision, it isn’t too popular with me, but it is what it is and you have to move on.

Gallant has noted that as much as he disagreed with the decision, he’s not going to worry about what’s in the past now. “I’m going to look at the future and that’s what you have to do as a coach.”

Related: What Do Oilers Do About Smith/Koskinen Goaltending Dilemma?

What About the NHL All-Star Game?

After he was removed as coach of the Golden Knights, it was later announced Gallant would no longer be the coach of the Pacific All-Stars. But, that was Gallant’s choice.

“I talked to the NHL about it and they sort of left it up to me, but I didn’t really feel comfortable (going),” said Gallant. “I just said I’d sooner pass.”

Part of that could be that he wasn’t quite ready to appear as an NHL coach so quickly after being let go in what he considered a surprising decision. “I was quite surprised actually when it happened,” Gallant said. “You don’t see something coming like that when you have 2 ½ years in.”

Even more interesting is that rumors have surfaced he was days away from signing an extension with the Golden Knights. It’s hard to blame him for opting out of any immediate coaching duties knowing that he’d be coaching some of the best players in the game, but a team who is struggling a little felt he wasn’t a good enough coach to get another deal.

Gallant’s firing is still considered an odd decision by many but he’s likely not going to be out of a job long. Should he want, another position will open up for him as early as this season.

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