Blackhawks hire Derek Plante as assistant coach, completing Luke Richardson’s staff

Plante returns from Minnesota-Duluth after previously playing and serving as a development coach for the Hawks.

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New Blackhawks assistant coach Derek Plante briefly played for the team in 2000.

New Blackhawks assistant coach Derek Plante briefly played for the team in 2000.

Chicago Sun-Times file photo

The Blackhawks added the final man to their new coaching staff Monday, hiring Derek Plante as their third assistant coach.

Plante, 51, officially comes to the Hawks from the University of Minnesota-Duluth, where he spent last season as an associate head coach, but he previously spent five years (from 2015 to 2020) as a Hawks player development coach.

New head coach Luke Richardson’s entourage now consists of Plante, former Bruins assistant Kevin Dean and former Hawks interim coach Derek King as assistants, with goalie coach Jimmy Waite and video coach Matt Meacham staying aboard from the previous regime.

“It’s the NHL, you’ve got to hire the best, and sometimes personalities clash a little bit and that might not work as well,” Richardson said in July. “Right now, our personalities are matching up fine [in terms of] our view of the game and our view of how you treat people, with respect not just as hockey players but as individuals.

“[We share a] thought process of creating relationships and not just being coaches dictating what we want every day. Having a little bit of back-and-forth, we’re all on the same page, and that’s going to work well. If we weren’t, in the long run there’s wasted time arguing about how to approach things, be it on the ice or off the ice. I really like the direction of the staff.”

All four coaches once played in the NHL themselves. Richardson’s 1,417 career games lead the way, but King played in 830, Plante in 450 and Dean in 331.

Plante had several productive seasons for the Sabres in the 1990s before his playing career gradually fizzled out. He was coincidentally traded with Dean in February 2000 from the Stars to the Hawks — the trade was Sylvain Cote and Dave Manson for Plante, Dean and a draft pick — and tallied two points in 17 games in Chicago.

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