The Vancouver Canucks’ last hire of a coach from New York didn’t go as planned, but that hasn’t stopped the team from going back to the well. According to Sportsnet, the Canucks have requested permission to interview Rangers assistant Scott Arniel for their head coaching vacancy.
Arniel, 51, has coached the Canucks’ AHL affiliate on two separate occasions. From 2006-10, Arniel coached the Manitoba Moose, even leading to the team to a Calder Cup Finals appearance in 2009, then he returned to coach the Chicago Wolves in 2012-13.
Both teams were affiliates of Vancouver at those times.
In between those stints in the AHL, Arniel also coached the Columbus Blue Jackets for one-plus seasons from 2010-12.
After missing the playoffs in his first full year with Columbus, finishing 34-35-13, the team fired Arniel midway through his second season once the wheels came off and the losses starting piling up.
After returning to the Canucks organization for a year, Arniel joined former coach Alain Vigneault’s staff in New York after he was hired by the Rangers.
The Canucks had fired Vigneault in May 2013 as part of a bizarre coaching carousel saw the Rangers and Canucks effectively trade coaches last offseason, with John Tortarella briefly taking over in Vancouver.
Vigneault and Arniel have had great success in New York, leading the Rangers to the Stanley Cup Final this year after an impressive run through the Eastern Conference.
Obviously the head coach isn’t going anywhere, but it’s not surprising at least one team is showing interest in Arniel given that success.