The Winnipeg Jets announced shocking news Friday morning.
Paul Maurice, their head coach for the last nine seasons, resigned.
The Jets first announced the news in a tweet shortly at 9:30 AM central standard time.
Paul Maurice resigns as head coach of the Winnipeg Jets
The Winnipeg Jets announced today that Head Coach Paul Maurice has decided to resign from his position as Head Coach of the hockey club effectively immediately. His resignation has been accepted by the team.
Dave Lowry has agreed to assume the head coaching duties on an interim basis.
— Winnipeg Jets PR (@WpgJetsPR) December 17, 2021
Maurice had been the Jets coach since the 2013-14 season when he was hired midseason to replace the fired Claude Noel. The Jets struggled to a 19–23–5 start that year, but Maurice helped push them to a winning record to finish the year (18-12—5).
Maurice explained during a press conference that the team needed a new voice and he was ready to step away.
Emotional Paul Maurice: this is a good team, I'm a good coach…but sometimes you can only push so far. Sometimes a team needs a new voice. They haven't quit on me, but need a different voice. It's the right time for it, and I know that.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) December 17, 2021
“I feel good,” Maurice said. “I don’t have a game I have to coach tonight and I don’t have to get a job tomorrow.”
“The only way I would step back again,” Maurice said, “is if I felt like I’d be even better than I was before, and that’s not today.”
Beloved by ownership, Maurice was not going to be fired and ultimately stepped away on his own terms.
I've long been told that Winnipeg management and owners loved Maurice and that he would only leave this job on his own terms.
Turns out that was the case.
— Greg Wyshynski (@wyshynski) December 17, 2021
During his tenure in Winnipeg, Maurice led the Jets to a 315-223-62 record and a .577 points percentage.
The Jets play the Capitals tonight at Canada Life Centre and will be led by Lowry. Lowry is a former forward who made a Stanley Cup Final appearance during the 1996-97 season with the Florida Panthers. Since the 2008-09 season, Lowry had been coaching in the WHL before joining Maurice’s staff in 2020-21 as an assistant. His son, Adam is a current forward for the Jets.
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