The announcement that Adam Oates would become the 16th head coach of the Washington Capitals was greeted with general approval by members of the hockey media, as well as by members of the Capitals and Oates' former team, the New Jersey Devils.
A sampling of the selection is below.
Yahoo's Greg Wyshynski:
At face, it's a smart move.
If it's up-tempo McPhee wants, it's up-tempo Oates will deliver. The idea of Nicklas Backstrom and Mike Ribeiro working with one of the best centers in NHL history - sixth all-time in assists - is tantalizing. The idea that Oates will take over the Capitals' power play - which ranked behind that of the Devils' last season - is encouraging.
The major concern here isn't Oates' systems or game-plans. It's his inexperience.
Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello also endorsed Oates' hiring, telling Tom Gulliti of The Record
"It's something that he wanted and I'm just glad it worked out for him," Lamoriello said. "He's been great for us, solid in every way and it's a great opportunity for him. We're totally supportive of it."
#NJDevils' Zubrus on Adam Oates: "I'm happy, I guess, for Washington, but a little bit disappointed because I liked him. I liked him a lot."— Stephen Whyno (@SWhyno) June 26, 2012
Just spoke w/ Zach Parise on Oates hiring, "He will do a great job there. It is a big loss for us, helped make a lot of us better players...— Josh Rimer (@JoshRimerHockey) June 26, 2012
Adam Henrique on Oates Hiring, "WASH is getting a great coach. He did a lot for me this past yr and helped improve my game over the year....— Josh Rimer (@JoshRimerHockey) June 26, 2012
As for what the Capitals players think, Oates has already apparently reached out to a certain Mr. Ovechkin.
The Washington Capitals star was wearing a wide grin Tuesday after learning that the team's new head coach, Adam Oates, has a track record of encouraging offensive play. That's a distinct departure from the defence-first system preached by previous boss Dale Hunter.
"It's not blocking the shots and it's not dump and chase," Ovechkin said during the NHLPA's executive board meetings. "Any system that I play I learn a lot. I'm an offensive guy, it's not a secret to anybody, and I'm pretty excited and very happy to hear the Caps signed that kind of guy who likes offence."