Rangers GM Chris Drury discusses Gerard Gallant decision, coaching search
In the aftermath of head coach Gerard Gallant and the Rangers “mutually parting ways,” GM Chris Drury gave some insight on the decision and the team’s future.
Drury, speaking to the media on a conference call -- via LoHud -- shortly after the decision to move forward with a new Rangers coach was made, said that both parties felt a change was “beneficial” after a number of discussions were had.
This comes, of course, after reports that Gallant and Drury had a heated confrontation after the Rangers fell in Game 4 to the Devils, tying the series at 2-2. That led to many speculating that a first-round exit would bring a change behind the bench.
That speculation proved to be true, but Drury remained mum on what went down behind the scenes.
"I’m not going to get into specific details with any private conversations," Drury said.
Instead, Drury wanted to make it clear that when assessing who was to blame for the early exit, he put it on the team.
"We win as a team and lose as a team,” he said. “We're all disappointed we're not still playing. I think if I could reference the exit meetings, the good thing is, no one wants to be left off the hook."
In a statement following the official announcement of Gallant’s departure, Drury said "after my evaluation of the season and discussions with Gerard, we mutually came to the conclusion that a change would be beneficial for both parties. I wish he and his family all the best in the future. Our search for a new head coach will begin right away."
In regards to the upcoming head coach search, Drury said he wants to be as thorough as he and the organization can be but there will be no timetable or stylistic preference.
"I’m just looking for the right fit,” Drury said. “We’re not going to limit ourselves right now to any specific type of style or coach or experience."
In two seasons with the Rangers, Gallant had a regular season record of 99-46-19. Gallant’s tenure also saw the Rangers play in the Eastern Conference Finals just last year. With a win-now team in place, Drury and the organization believed it was best that a new voice lead this group to their first Stanley Cup since 1994.