The Blackhawks continued their postseason housecleaning on Tuesday, firing Rockford IceHogs head coach Ted Dent.
Dent has been with the IceHogs (and the Norfolk Admirals before that) for 11 seasons, including the last six as head coach. Among the players whom Dent helped usher into the NHL are Niklas Hjalmarsson, Bryan Bickell, Corey Crawford, Andrew Shaw, Kris Versteeg, Teuvo Teravainen, Ryan Hartman, Tanner Kero and Vinnie Hinostroza.
“The Chicago Blackhawks thank Ted for all of his contributions throughout his tenure with the organization,” Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman said. “He played a major role in helping a number of players reach the NHL level with the Chicago Blackhawks, many of whom became Stanley Cup champions. We wish Ted and his family the best.”
Dent went 221-179-33-21 as a head coach in Rockford. He just signed a three-year contract extension last April, a deal that was supposed to take him through the 2018-19 season. The IceHogs, with many of their top players either called up or traded in recent seasons, missed the playoffs this season.
“It’s true that’s a good training ground,” Bowman said on Saturday. “The American League is also for players to get opportunities to succeed and fail that they might not get at this level. We want to be better there, as well. There’s no doubt we’re not happy with the fact our team didn’t make the playoffs. We have to find ways up and down our organization to be better.”
Dent is the second head to roll since the Hawks were swept by the Nashville Predators in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Hawks assistant coach Mike Kitchen was fired on Monday.