Connect with us

Nashville Predators

Predators Head Coach Andrew Brunette Voted A Jack Adams Finalist

Published

on

Brunette
Photo of Andrew Brunette courtesy of the Nashville Predators

Predators head coach Andrew Brunette has been named a finalist for the Jack Adams Award, an accolade given to the NHL’s best head coach.

He joins Winnipeg’s Rick Bowness and Vancouver’s Rick Tocchet, whom he’s coaching against Friday night at Bridgestone Arena in Game 6 of their Stanley Cup Playoff series.

In his first year as the Predators head coach, Brunette led the team to a 47-30-5 record and 99 points, which included a franchise-best 18-game point streak (16-0-2) and the team’s ninth playoff appearance in the last 10 years.

This is not the first nomination Brunette has received for the award. He finished as the runner-up in 2021-22 when he led the Florida Panthers to the Presidents’ Trophy, awarded to the team with the best regular season record, an Atlantic Division title and the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference.

“Last time [I was a finalist] didn’t go quite as well, I think I lost my job a little while later, so I don’t know how to take it anymore,” Brunette joked. “…Obviously, it’s a tremendous honor.”

Brunette joins Barry Trotz, who finished second in voting in 2009-10, and Peter Laviolette, who finished third in 2014-15, as the only Predators’ coaches to be named finalists.

If Brunette takes home the hardware this year, he will join goaltender Pekka Rinne (Vezina Trophy winner in 2018), defenseman Roman Josi (Norris Trophy winner in 2020), and forward Steve Sullivan (Bill Masterton Trophy in 2009) as the only members of the organization to win a major individual award.

Before the season began, many projected the Predators to miss the playoffs with some speculating they would finish toward the bottom of the division.

However, Brunette overcame the season’s slow start in which the Predators managed just five wins through the first 15 games and playing to the level the “experts” expected.

However, under the direction of new general manager Barry Trotz, who emphasized he wanted to build a team of perennial winners, Brunette got the most from the veterans on the roster and utilizes the strengths of the younger players to go on a late-season run to the postseason.

Despite all odds and doubts, the Predators qualified for the playoffs as the West’s top wild-card team. Once down 3-1 to the Canucks, the Predators are pushing for a Game 7 in a competitive playoff series.

Captain Roman Josi knows that Brunette didn’t inherit the best situation.

“He came in as a new coach, it was a lot of new players, he brought in a new system, different system,” Josi told NHL.com. “The biggest thing I would say for him is it didn’t always go that well in the beginning, we had our ups and downs. It wasn’t as consistent as probably he would have hoped. But he just stuck with it. He kept believing in us. He believed in us the whole year, he believed in the system, and we just kept chipping at it and got more and more consistent. So well deserved. He’s done an amazing job this year.”

Be sure to follow Nashville Hockey Now on X/Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.

 

Get Nashville HN in Your Inbox!

Enter your email address and get our stories send straight to your inbox.