TORONTO -- Even though his team lost to the New Jersey Devils in the first round of the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Florida Panthers GM Dale Tallon said he's very happy to see Peter DeBoer experiencing the level of success he's having now.
"Pete's a really good coach and a good person," Tallon told NHL.com from the NHL Scouting Combine. "I'm real happy for his success."
About a year ago, Tallon fired DeBoer as coach of the Panthers after one season of working together. It had been three seasons for DeBoer in Florida, and Tallon thought a change was needed. However, Tallon was quick to point out to NHL.com that it had nothing to do with the job DeBoer did.
"It had nothing to do with his coaching abilities," Tallon said from the NHL Scouting Combine. "Just a matter of bringing in someone that was more my style. Just wanted to make a change."
It certainly worked for both parties -- DeBoer was hired a couple of months later by the Devils and has them in the Stanley Cup Final, while DeBoer's replacement, Kevin Dineen, led the Panthers to the Southeast Division title.
As happy as Tallon is for his former coach, he said he's only rooting for a good series.
"I just want to see good hockey," he said. "I want to see a good series. I got friends on both sides.
"Just wish it was us."
Contact Adam Kimelman at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK