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- Canadian ice hockey player-coach
The Columbus Blue Jackets have hired longtime St. Louis Blues assistant coach Brad Shaw to join John Tortorella’s staff.
Shaw had been with the Blues from 2006-07 through the end of 2015-16 and was important in helping defensemen Kevin Shattenkirk and Alex Pietrangelo become star players.
The Blue Jackets have two of the top young defensemen in the NHL in Ryan Murray and Seth Jones.
“Brad Shaw is a smart, experienced coach who is very well-respected in the coaching community and is going to be a great asset to our club, particularly our defensemen,” said Tortorella in a statement provided by the team. “He is a solid hockey guy who will fit in extremely well with our staff and I’m really looking forward to working with him.”
Shaw was offered a one-year contract with the Blues for next season – the final year of coach Ken Hitchcock – but opted to try to find more stability elsewhere. Shaw was promoted to the title of “associate coach” before the 2012-13 season. Shaw also handled the St. Louis penalty kill.
"It was a one-year (offer) and I just made the decision with my family that now is a good time to maybe take the next step in my career," Shaw told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "It's been a great 10 years here. I've had so much growth as a person and as a coach and met so many great people. It wasn't an easy decision, I can tell you that."
The Blues eventually hired Mike Yeo as the team’s head coach in waiting.
The 52-year-old Shaw played a total of 377 NHL games in his career and his name had sometimes been rumored as a head coaching candidate elsewhere. He went 18-18-4 as the interim coach of the Islanders in 2005-06, when he replaced Steve Stirling mid-season.
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