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Oddsmakers Like Red Wings Coach Lalonde for Jack Adams Award

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Derek Lalonde, Red Wings coach

Oddsmakers believe first-year Detroit Red Wings coach Derek Lalonde has a better chance this season of winning the Jack Adams Award than two-time Stanley Cup winning coach Jon Cooper.

Lalonde is at 12-1 to be named NHL coach of the year in 2022-23. Those are the sixth-best odds in the field. Several veteran coaches have higher odds. Cooper’s odds are 18-1.

The odds undoubtedly speak to Lalonde’s reputation as a first-rate assistant for Cooper when the Tampa Bay Lightning won back-to-back titles. However, the odds also reflect Detroit’s 32-40-10 record last season. Members of the NHL Broadcasters Association, who vote on the award, have historically looked favorably upon new coaches who dramatically increase a team’s point total.

Colorado’s Jared Bednar is the Jack Adams betting favorite at 7-1, followed by Florida’s Paul Maurice (8-1), Carolina’s Rod Brind’Amour (9-1), New York Rangers’ Gerard Gallant (10-1) and Toronto’s Sheldon Keefe (11-1).

A Detroit Red Wings coach has not won the Jack Adams Award since Scotty Bowman won it in 1996.

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Demers Won Back-to-Back

Former Detroit Red Wings coach Jacques Demers is the only NHL coach to win the award in back-to-back seasons. He won the award in both 1987 and 1988. In 1986-87, Demers took a Red Wings team from 40 points to 78 points. In 1987-88. the Red Wings won the Norris Division title. They advanced to the conference final in the postseason of both seasons.

The only other Detroit coach to win the Adams was the late Bobby Kromm who won in 1977-78 after guiding the team to 78 points. The season before, the Red Wings won only 16 games and finished with 41 points.

Lalonde was named to replace Jeff Blashill on June 30. He is the 28th coach in Red Wings history. Blashill, meanwhile, moved into Lalonde’s former job as a Tampa Bay assistant.

The Red Wings’ new season starts Thursday when younger players show up for the NHL Prospects Tournament in Traverse City, Mich.. The Red Wings’ rookies, led by Simon Edvinsson, Elmer Soderblom and Albert Johansson among others, will play the Columbus Blue Jackets Friday at 3 p.m., and the Dallas Stars at 6 p.m. on Saturday. Their final game is Monday at 11 a.m. against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

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