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Carbonneau seventh NHL coach fired this season

by John McGourty
Guy Carbonneau became the seventh NHL coach to be fired this season when the Montreal Canadiens relieved him of his duties on Monday.

Carbonneau was fired after 66 games with his team in second place in the Northeast Division and fifth in the Eastern Conference with a 35-24-7 record. The Canadiens were 89-59-16 in Carbonneau's two-plus seasons at the helm. Carbonneau was replaced by General Manager Bob Gainey.

The first coach fired this season was Chicago's Denis Savard, who was let go on Oct. 16 after a 1-2-1 start. Savard, who was 65-66-16 during his tenure, was replaced by Joel Quenneville.

The Tampa Bay Lightning fired coach Barry Melrose on Nov. 14, after 16 games in which the Lightning were 5-7-4. Melrose had been appointed head coach in June after a 13-year hiatus. He was replaced by Rick Tocchet on an interim basis.

Stanley Cup-winning coach Peter Laviolette was fired by the Carolina Hurricanes on Dec. 3. The Hurricanes were 12-11-2 and trailed the Southeast Division-leading Washington Capitals by three points. Carolina got off to a hot start, but lost nine of 16 games in November and four of five before Laviolette's firing. Laviolette coached the Hurricanes to the 2006 Stanley Cup but his team missed the playoffs the next two seasons. Laviolette was replaced by Paul Maurice.

The Ottawa Senators fired coach Craig Hartsburg on Feb. 1, following a 17-24-7 start. Hartsburg was also hired in June. Hartsburg, who previously coached the Anaheim Ducks and Chicago, hadn't coached in the NHL since 2000. He was replaced by Cory Clouston.

Michel Therrien coached the Pittsburgh Penguins to the Stanley Cup Final last season but wasn't able to inspire to similar success a revised lineup that was badly affected by injuries this season. Therrien was fired on Feb. 15 when his team was in 10th place in the Eastern Conference with a 27-25-5 record. The Penguins started the season 11-4-2. Therrien was replaced by Dan Bylsma.

The New York Rangers fired Tom Renney on Feb. 23, after his team went 31-23-7 but only 2-7-3 in their previous 12 games. Renney had coached the Rangers for almost five seasons, winning two playoff series. Renney was replaced by John Tortorella.
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