Muller: No word from management on job status
Posted April 16
RALEIGH, N.C. — Carolina Hurricanes coach Kirk Muller says he has not been told by management if he will keep his job.
Muller said Wednesday that "as of right now, I'm head coach of the Carolina Hurricanes."
He says his discussions with general manager Jim Rutherford and vice president of hockey operations Ron Francis have centered on reviewing a season in which Carolina missed the playoffs for a fifth straight year.
Muller is 80-80-27 in three years with the Hurricanes. They went 36-35-11 this season, earning 83 points while finishing 13th in the East. They've missed the playoffs in seven of the eight years since they won the 2006 Stanley Cup.
Owner Peter Karmanos said last week that "I like our coaching staff" and that "I think they've made a lot of progress."
Muller said that he believed in the system that they played and felt that the staff is really starting to grow with the players. The challenge for him, he said, would to better identify players' roles and keep players in them, but noted that the injuries early didn't help.
"I believe that if we come back next year and we are a healthy group, that we have a team that can change things here," said Muller Wednesday. "We showed we could beat all of the top teams in the league this year, the key will be to do it consistently."
Muller said that because the team did not make the playoffs everyone would be evaluated as they try to find ways to improve. The pllayers mirrored the coach's sentiments in their end of season interviews Tuesday.
"I hope there are some players that are not happy and not complacent," Muller said. "If we had 20 or 22 happy guys today, that's not a good sign. We have to keep pushing everybody, making everyone accountable. The pressure and accountability should come from within our group."