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NHL team reportedly eyeing Karl Taylor for assistant coaching job



Karl Taylor

Karl Taylor may not have gotten the Nashville Predators head coaching job, but the Milwaukee Admirals head coach very well may be coaching in the NHL next season, after all.

On the latest 32 Thoughts podcast, Sportsnet’s Jeff Marek divulged that he’s heard Taylor’s name come up along with two others for an assistant coach job with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

“I had a couple of names float my way,” Marek said. “Karl Taylor, who’s the head coach of Milwaukee in the American Hockey League. … Todd Nelson of the Hershey Bears … Mitch Love … I don’t know how far the Maple Leafs are along in that process of trying to find the next assistant coach to replace Spencer Carbery, but those were three I had conversations about over the weekend.”

Carbery, who was one of three finalists along with Taylor for the Predators coaching job before they hired Andrew Brunette, spent the last two seasons as an assistant in Toronto where he oversaw the team’s power play, which ranked No. 2 last season and No. 1 the previous season.

Taylor is a logical choice to replace Carbery, as Milwaukee’s power play ranked in the top two of the AHL each of the last three years.

Since taking over the Admirals job in 2018, Taylor led the team to a 157-90-40 record with three playoff appearances, an AHL Western Conference Final appearance and a Central Division, Western Conference and AHL regular-season title in addition to winning the AHL Coach of the Year award in 2019-20.

Thirty-seven of the players Taylor coached played in the NHL in 2022, and he also became the first Admirals coach to win an AHL playoff series in back-to-back seasons.

If he doesn’t land the Toronto job, one would think the Predators will consider Taylor, who briefly coached the team during the 2021 regular season when the entire Predators coaching staff was dealing with a COVID outbreak, to replace recently fired power-play coach Dan Lambert on Brunette’s coaching staff.

“He’s a very good coach,” incoming Predators general manager Barry Trotz said. “I’m excited about what he’s done in Milwaukee. … I hope [Taylor gets a head-coaching opportunity]. I think Karl deserves that…and is ready for that. I’m very happy with Karl. But I would expect [he’ll get NHL coaching interest].”

Follow Michael Gallagher on Twitter @MGsports_

(Photo of Karl Taylor via the Milwaukee Admirals)

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