Willie Desjardins

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Willie Desjardins
Willie Desjardins with Calder Cup 06-17-2014.jpg
Desjardins in 2014 with the Calder Cup
Born (1957-02-11) February 11, 1957 (age 60)
Climax, Saskatchewan, Canada
Height 5 ft 8 in (173 cm)
Weight 160 lb (73 kg; 11 st 6 lb)
Position Centre
Shot Right
Played for Moose Jaw Canucks
Swift Current Broncos
Lethbridge Broncos
Nijmegen Tigers
Playing career 1971–1984

Wilbrod "Willie" Desjardins (born February 11, 1957) is a Canadian former ice hockey coach and former player. He was the head coach of the Vancouver Canucks of the National Hockey League (NHL) from 2014 to 2017.

Playing career[edit]

Desjardins began his hockey career playing in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL) for the Moose Jaw Canucks from 1971 to 1974 and split the 1974-75 season between the Moose Jaw Canucks and the Swift Current Broncos. He played in the Western Canada Hockey League (WCHL) for the Lethbridge Broncos from 1975 through 1977.[1] He followed his junior hockey career by studying at the University of Saskatchewan and played with the Saskatchewan Huskies under then head coach Dave King. King recommended him to Alex Andjelic, head coach of Vissers Nijmegen in the Netherlands. Desjardins spent the 1983/84 season in Nijmegen and won, as captain, the first Dutch championship with the club.[2]

Coaching career[edit]

Desjardins began his coaching career at the University of Calgary in 1985 as assistant coach and became head coach in 1989. He then coached the Seibu Bears in Japan. He then returned to Canada and became head coach of the Saskatoon Blades, replacing Donn Clark midway through the 1997–98 season. He was then offered a job as an assistant coach for the Canada men's national team.

Once hired by the Medicine Hat Tigers, Desjardins was instrumental in the Tigers' first playoff appearance in five years in the 2002–03 season, leading them to a Memorial Cup appearance and their 4th WHL championship in 2003–04, and a 96-point Eastern Conference regular season champion 2004–05 season. Desjardins took on the duties of general manager for the 2005–06 season.

Desjardins was awarded the Dunc McCallum Memorial Trophy for the Coach of the Year in the Western Hockey League and the Canadian Hockey League.[3]

In 2009, he was the assistant coach of Team Canada's World Junior Gold medal team, under head coach Pat Quinn and alongside fellow assistant coaches Guy Boucher and Dave Cameron.[4] Desjardins was the head coach of Team Canada's 2010 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships team.

From 2010 to 2012, Desjardins served as the associate head coach of the Dallas Stars of the National Hockey League before being selected as the head coach of their AHL team in Cedar Park, Texas in June 2012.[5] On June 17, 2014, he led his Texas Stars team to their first Calder Cup Championship.

On June 23, 2014, Desjardins was hired as the head coach for the Vancouver Canucks, replacing John Tortorella, who was dismissed as head coach after one season.[6] On April 10, 2017, he was fired after the team missed the playoffs for the second consecutive season, along with assistants Perry Pearn and Doug Lidster.[7] Desjardins posted a record of 109–110–27 in three seasons with the club.

Personal life[edit]

He holds a Bachelor of Education (BEd) and a Master of Social Work (MSW).[8] He is married and has three kids.[9]

Head coaching record[edit]

WHL[edit]

Team Year Regular season Playoffs
G W L T OTL Pts Pct Division rank Result
Saskatoon Blades 1997–98 39 10 23 6 26 .333 4th in East Lost in 1st Round
Medicine Hat Tigers 2002–03 72 29 34 2 7 67 .465 3rd in Central Lost in 2nd Round
Medicine Hat Tigers 2003–04 72 40 20 9 3 92 .639 1st in Central Won Championship
Medicine Hat Tigers 2004–05 72 45 21 4 2 96 .667 1st in Central Lost in 2nd Round
Medicine Hat Tigers 2005–06 72 47 16 9 103 .715 1st in Central Lost in 3rd Round
Medicine Hat Tigers 2006–07 72 52 17 3 107 .743 1st in Central Won Championship
Medicine Hat Tigers 2007–08 72 43 22 7 93 .646 3rd in Central Lost in 1st Round
Medicine Hat Tigers 2008–09 72 36 29 7 79 .549 2nd in Central Lost in 2nd Round
Medicine Hat Tigers 2009–10 72 41 23 8 90 .625 3rd in Central Lost in 2nd Round
WHL Totals 615 343 205 21 46 753 .612 4 Division Titles 9 Playoff Appearances
2 Championships

AHL[edit]

Team Year Regular season Playoffs
G W L OTL Pts Pct Division rank Result
Texas Stars 2012–13 76 43 22 11 97 .638 1st in South Lost in 2nd Round
Texas Stars 2013–14 76 48 18 10 106 .697 1st in South Won Calder Cup
AHL Totals 152 91 40 21 203 .668 2 Division Titles 2 Playoff Appearances
1 Calder Cup

NHL[edit]

Team Year Regular season Playoffs
G W L OTL Pts Pct Division rank Result
Vancouver Canucks 2014–15 82 48 29 5 101 .616 2nd in Pacific Lost in First Round (Flames)
Vancouver Canucks 2015–16 82 31 38 13 75 .457 6th in Pacific Missed playoffs
Vancouver Canucks 2016–17 82 30 43 9 69 .421 7th in Pacific Missed playoffs
NHL Totals 246 109 110 27 245 .498 1 Playoff Appearance

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Willie Desjardins hockey statistics and profile at hockeydb.com". hockeydb.com. Retrieved October 29, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Willie Desjardins coach Vancouver Canucks | AHOUD Devils Nijmegen". nijmegendevils.nl. Retrieved October 29, 2014. 
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "2009 Team Canada Roster". Retrieved June 13, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Desjardins named coach in Texas". Retrieved June 13, 2012. 
  6. ^ "Willie Desjardins named Canucks head coach". Retrieved June 23, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Canucks relieve Willie Desjardins of duties". NHL.com. April 10, 2017. Retrieved April 10, 2017. 
  8. ^ "Canucks announce Willie Desjardins as 18th head coach in franchise history | (CKNW AM) AM980". cknw.com. Retrieved October 29, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Willie Desjardins hired as coach of Vancouver Canucks - NHL.com - News". nhl.com. Retrieved October 29, 2014. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
John Tortorella
Head coach of the Vancouver Canucks
20142017
Succeeded by
Travis Green