On the defensive end in particular, Stevens has helped direct the Kings to top-10 finishes in fewest goals allowed per game in every year he has been with the Kings and since he was hired in 2010-11, the Kings hold the lowest goals against per game average in the league. The club's penalty killing percentage has ranked in the Top-10 in four out of the seven years he has been with the club including the fourth-best penalty killing unit since he was hired. In 2013-14, the Kings won the William M. Jennings Trophy as the team with the lowest goals-against-average (GAA) in the league, the first time in franchise history the Kings have won the award, and this past season the Kings ranked sixth in fewest goals allowed.
Stevens, who served as the Kings Head Coach for four games in December of 2011, worked as the Head Coach of the Philadelphia Flyers (2006-09) prior to joining the Kings. With Philadelphia he had a 120-109-34 record while leading the Flyers to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2008.
The native of Campbellton, New Brunswick, took over as the Flyers Head Coach on October 22, 2006, after beginning the 2006-07 campaign as the club's Assistant Coach. The Flyers were 21-42-11 under Stevens in 2006-07, before having a great turn-around in 2007-08 (the Flyers had an NHL-best 39-point improvement from the year before). In Philadelphia Stevens coached a team that featured seven 20-goal scorers (2007-08) and those Flyers were one of two NHL teams to feature three defensemen who registered 30 points. Following that season The Hockey News honored Stevens with their Coach of the Year Award.
In 2007-08 the Flyers went 42-29-11 in the regular season and qualified for the playoffs before eliminating Washington in the first round and top-seeded Montreal in the second round. Stevens guided Philadelphia to a 99-point season in 2008-09 (44-27-11) and the team's second consecutive playoff appearance. He was 13-11-1 to start the 2009-10 campaign before he was relieved of his duties on December 4, 2009. That Flyers club eventually reached the 2010 Stanley Cup Final.
Before his NHL coaching tenure, Stevens was the Head Coach of the Philadelphia Phantoms (the Flyers' AHL affiliate) for six years (2000-01 through 2005-06). His Phantoms made the playoffs four times and won the Calder Cup Championship in 2005. In 2012, he was inducted into the AHL Hall of Fame.
Stevens was drafted by the Flyers (third round, 47th overall) in the 1984 NHL Entry Draft and played parts of five seasons with Philadelphia and Hartford, totaling 10 points (0-10=10) and 48 penalty minutes in 53 NHL regular season games. In 834 career AHL games Stevens, a defenseman, had 188 points (21-167=188), 1,397 penalty minutes and won three Calder Cups: 1988 with Hershey, 1991 with Springfield (team captain) and 1998 with the Phantoms (team captain).
Stevens is officially the 27th Head Coach in Kings history with 24 different men - including Stevens - having served as Head Coach. When Stevens served as the Kings Head Coach for four games during the 2011-12 regular season (Dec. 13, Dec. 15, Dec. 17 and Dec. 19), the Kings posted a 2-2-0 record. Stevens replaced Terry Murray (his last game was December 10, 2011) before Darryl Sutter was hired (his first game was December 22, 2011).
John, 50 (5/4/66), and his wife, Stacy, have two sons, John and Nolan.