80Bill Peters
Photo Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Notes from the Bill Peters introductory press conference

This morning at the Saddledome, the Calgary Flames introduced former Carolina Hurricanes bench boss Bill Peters as their new coach. Peters and general manager Brad Treliving held court with local media and chatted a bit about the hiring, the fit, and where things go from here.

Arguably the biggest news item of the press conference came out very early: Treliving admitted that he didn’t speak to anybody else for the job. It was very evident that the ousting of Glen Gulutzan last Tuesday was very much about a specific type of upgrade behind the bench. Treliving and Peters both mentioned that the team will play a similar style from a year ago. Peters described the style as: “We wanna play quick, we wanna have the puck, and we wanna attack.”

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Peters and Treliving are headed right to work on hiring two assistants: Peters’ preference is to hire “teachers,” with one coach running forwards and the power play and the other coach running the defense and penalty kill. Considering that Peters is headed to Europe for the World Championship on Wednesday, we probably won’t get much news on that until closer to June.

What was really emphasized was the importance of (a) special teams and (b) a good camp and a good start. On special teams, Peters wants to be top 10 “in all those primary categories,” because being in the top half of the league means you’re on the bubble. He doesn’t want them to be a bubble team: he wants a good start and for them to be worrying about home ice down the stretch, not eking in.

He admitted that burying Eddie Lack when he was in Carolina “wasn’t a proud moment as a coach.”

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The most impressive thing about Peters may be his knowledge of the Flames roster. He apologized if he forgot anybody in advance, then ran through several pieces of the team.

  • He thinks he’ll leave Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan together, noting he’s more of a “pairs guy than a lines guy.”
  • On Matthew Tkachuk: “There’s not five guys in the league like that.”
  • Mark Giordano and Dougie Hamilton: “Elite in many different areas.”
  • He really knew the blueline group, rattling off specific points about Travis Hamonic, TJ Brodie, Brett Kulak and Rasmus Andersson that he liked.
  • He had a lot of praise for Mike Smith and David Rittich, though noted that Rittich will likely be pushed in camp.

Treliving emphasized building relationships with players as important for the coaching staff, rather than staying in the coaches’ room.

All told, there weren’t any groundbreaking comments from either the general manager or his new coach, but both men said what you would expect them to say. But Peters came across as passionate and knowledgeable about the team he’s inheriting.

  • Squishin

    I liked Peters’ manner in his interviews and presser today. Let’s see is he can follow through. If nothing else but the powerplay improves, this will still be a success.

    Loved the Goldilocks analogy on 960 – Bob Hartley was too hard, Glen Gulutzan was too soft. They’re hoping Bill Peters is just right.

  • freethe flames

    Now that BT has his man; they need to focus on hiring the right assistant coaches. BT also needs to upgrade the quality of the forward group so guys can be slotted correctly. A must whether it is through FA or a trade is add at least one top forward who is preferably a RHS. A second need is upgrade the depth at center; Shore is fine if you want to be a bubble team but if you want to really compete you need an upgrade at that position.(Shore as your 5th center is a good option) You also have to decide whether the Rittich/Gilles battle for back up is good enough and if you have any doubts add the right NHL back up.It would be great if BT could add some draft picks but at this point it is more important to add talent to the forward ranks. BT you signed your man and I hope it works but you now have to give him the equipment to make it work.