COLUMBUS, OHIO - The Columbus Blue Jackets have named three-time Stanley Cup champion John Madden as head coach of the club’s American Hockey League affiliate, the Cleveland Monsters, Blue Jackets Assistant General Manager Bill Zito announced today. Madden replaces Jared Bednar, who last week was hired as head coach of the Colorado Avalanche.
“John Madden has a winning pedigree, having been a part of three Stanley Cup championships and a collegiate national championship as a player and being a part of the coaching staff that helped the Florida Panthers become one of the NHL’s most improved clubs over the past three seasons,” said Zito. “He is a smart, energetic young coach who we believe to be the best person to lead our prospects in Cleveland.”
Madden, 43, joins the organization after serving the past three seasons as an assistant coach with the Panthers. During his stint in Florida, he helped the club win an Atlantic Division title in 2015-16 after posting franchise bests in wins and points with a 47-26-9 record (103 points). After going 29-45-8 (66 pts.) in 2013-14, Florida went 85-55-24 (.591 point percentage) over the past two seasons.
“I am really excited and would like to thank the Blue Jackets organization for the opportunity to serve as head coach of the defending Calder Cup champion Cleveland Monsters,” said Madden. “I am looking forward to working with Toby Petersen, Steve McCarthy, Manny Legace and the staff in Cleveland to continue to develop the young players in this organization in an environment that demands excellence on and off the ice.”
The Toronto, Ontario native was originally hired by Florida as a pro scout on September 26, 2013 before being named an assistant coach with the Panthers on November 8, 2013. Prior to joining the club, he served on the Montreal Canadiens scouting staff in 2012-13.
Madden completed a 13-year NHL playing career in 2011-12, helping the Panthers capture a Southeast Division championship. The center registered 165-183-348 with 219 penalty minutes and a +20 plus/minus rating in 898 career games with the Panthers, Minnesota Wild, Chicago Blackhawks and New Jersey Devils from 1998-2012. He helped the Devils capture Stanley Cups in 2000 and 2003 and the Blackhawks in 2010. He was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the NHL’s best defensive forward in 2000-01 and was runner-up for the award in 2002-03, 2003-04 and 2007-08.
Madden also recorded 58-96-154 with 84 penalty minutes in 149 career AHL games with the Albany River Rats from 1997-99. Prior to turning pro, he collected 80-100-180 and 123 penalty minutes in 160 games at the University of Michigan from 1993-97. He helped the Wolverines capture the NCAA championship in 1996 and the CCHA championship in 1994, 1996 and 1997. He was named a Hobey Baker Award finalist in 1996-97 after tallying career highs in assists and points with 26-37-63 in 42 contests.