On Wednesday evening, the National Hockey League announced its annual Jack Adams Award winner. The three finalists featured Boston’s Bruce Cassidy, Philadelphia’s Alain Vignault and Columbus’ John Tortorella, with members of the NHL Broadcasters’ Association making the ultimate decision by way of ranked vote.
In awarding just a first place, second place and third place vote, each broadcasting crew within the association gave out points to the three coaches deemed to be tops in the league for the past season of play. With a first place vote carrying a total of five points, a second place vote holding three points and a third place vote being one point.
Cassidy walked away as the victor with 288 total points, including 37 first place votes, with 29 second and 16 third place finishes. Vigneault (252) had 32 first place votes, 23 second place and 22 third place tallies to his name, while Tortorella (198) earned 28 first place votes, 12 second place and 22 third place votes.
Cassidy’s Bruins paced the NHL with a 44-14-12 record, finishing as the only league club to hit the 100-point mark, ending the COVID-19 shortened season six points above the next-best team (St. Louis, 94 points). Boston’s +53 goal differential was also tops in the league, while its four regulation losses at home was also a league best.
Behind the finalist trio were St. Louis’ Craig Berube, Colorado’s Jared Bednar, Pittsburgh’s Mike Sullivan, Edmonton’s Dave Tippett and Winnipeg’s Paul Maurice. The Jets’ bench boss finished the polling with 30 points, including three first-place votes. In dealing with a significantly weakened back-end following the Dustin Byfuglien hold out, and a slew of injuries in both the offence and the blueline, Maurice managed to get Winnipeg (37-28-6) into the 24-team Qualifying Round, where further injuries took ahold of the Jets, who fell in four games to the Calgary Flames.
First presented in 1974 to honour the late Jack Adams, the annual coach of the year award is given each year to the NHL head coach who is “adjudged to have contributed the most to his team’s success.” Votes are tallied following the conclusion of the regular season. Playoff contributions are not considered. Past winners include:
- 2019: Barry Trotz, New York Islanders
- 2018: Gerard Gallant, Vegas Golden Knights
- 2017: John Tortorella, Columbus Blue Jackets
- 2016: Barry Trotz, Washington Capitals
- 2015: Bob Hartley, Calgary Flames