The Philadelphia Flyers named Michel Therrien and Mike Yeo assistants to coach Alain Vigneault on Monday.
"I've always thought that the best way to do my job is to have the best possible people surrounding me and helping me and the organization," Vigneault said Wednesday. "Michel Therrien and Mike Yeo were both available. I've known Michel for a long time, I know the type of hockey person he is and I know the type of person he is, I know what he can bring. I've known Mike Yeo through coaching against him. [General manager] Chuck Fletcher had a real good relationship with him. I felt real strongly about what he could bring to our coaching group and I talked it over with Chuck about Mike and Michel and felt that these guys with [assistant] Ian Laperriere and Kim [Dillabaugh, goalie coach] would be a great fit for the Philadelphia Flyers."
Vigneault said Therrien will work with him in coaching the forwards and also will oversee the power play, and Yeo will handle the defensemen and the penalty kill. Laperriere will be in charge of pre-scouting opponents and be in the coaching booth upstairs during games. He had been on the bench and oversaw the penalty kill the previous six seasons.
"After thinking it through and talking with Chuck I felt we needed an eye in the sky that was relating what he was seeing to one of the coaches and that coach will be Michel Therrien," Vigneault said. "And I needed somebody to help us out with our advanced scouting and that's going to be Ian. I've always been a believer that the coach running the defense should be running the PK and the coach running the power play should be closer to the forwards. That's how I've always spread my roles in the past and that's how I'm doing it this year."
Therrien and Yeo worked together for four seasons with the Pittsburgh Penguins (2005-06 to 2008-09), with Therrien as coach and Yeo as his assistant.
In addition to coaching the Penguins, Therrien has had two stints as coach of the Montreal Canadiens. In 12 NHL seasons he is 406-303-82 with 23 ties in 814 games.
Yeo was fired Nov. 19 after three seasons as coach of the St. Louis Blues and was replaced by Craig Berube. Yeo previously spent five seasons (2011-16) as coach of the Minnesota Wild; he was hired for that job by Fletcher, the Wild GM at the time. Yeo is 246-181-55 in 482 games through eight seasons with the Wild and Blues.
"Nobody understands more of what's needed from an assistant than a head coach," Vigneault said. "They understand their roles. … That experience both those guys are going to bring is going to be beneficial throughout the organization, not just to me but to the pro scouting, to the management staff and especially to the players."
Adam Patterson also will return as video coach. Assistants Kris Knoblauch and Rick Wilson will not return. Knoblauch spent two seasons with the Flyers; Wilson had been hired Dec. 4.
The Flyers also announced Scott Gordon, who went 25-22-4 as coach after Dave Hakstol was fired Dec. 17, will return to his previous job as coach of Lehigh Valley of the American Hockey League. Kerry Huffman, who replaced Gordon as coach when Gordon moved to the Flyers, will remain as an assistant with Lehigh Valley.