The Columbus Blue Jackets on Wednesday hired former NHL player and longtime assistant coach Keith Acton as an assistant under Todd Richards. Acton joins newly hired associate coach Craig Hartsburg -- who joined the team earlier in the day -- as well as returning assistant Dan Hinote, goaltending coach Ian Clark, video assistant coach Dan Singleton and strength and conditioning coach Kevin Collins.
Acton, 54, has spent more than 30 years in the NHL as a player and assistant coach. He most recently served as an assistant with the Toronto Maple Leafs from 2001-11, working alongside coaches Pat Quinn, Paul Maurice and Ron Wilson. Prior to his stint with the Leafs, he was an assistant coach with the New York Rangers from 1998-00 under John Muckler and John Tortorella; he also served as an assistant/associate coach with the Philadelphia Flyers from 1994-98 under Terry Murray, Wayne Cashman and Roger Nielsen.
"Keith is a quality person who brings a lot of experience, both as an assistant coach and player in the NHL, to our coaching staff," Richards said in a statement. "My goal has been to surround myself with knowledgeable and experienced people who could add a lot to our staff and I think we have done that with the group of coaches we have here."
Action scored 226 goals and 584 points along with 1,123 penalty minutes in 1,023 NHL games with Montreal, the Minnesota North Stars, Edmonton, Philadelphia, Washington and the New York Islanders. He tallied a career-high 36 goals and 88 points in 78 games with Montreal in 1981-82, appearing in the All-Star Game that season. He also helped the Oilers capture the 1988 Stanley Cup championship.