Mike Grier, the San Jose Sharks normal supervisor, was requested in regards to the Boston University connection between himself and his newly named coach, David Quinn, as the boys sat subsequent to one another at a press convention Tuesday.
Quinn turned to him and quipped, “Did you go to BU?”Grier laughed.”It didn’t factor into the decision,” he mentioned. “I think it’s just the cherry on top, trying to get some more Terriers out west.”Quinn was employed as Sharks coach Tuesday, his second likelihood at a head job within the NHL after he coached the New York Rangers for 3 seasons from 2018-21. Before that, Quinn was the coach at BU and that, in fact, is the place this story begins.”I needed to get out of the house sometimes and get a workout in, so I’d go down to school and he was kind enough to talk hockey with me, let me pick his brain,” Grier mentioned.[RELATED: Quinn hired as Sharks coach, replaces Boughner]The two males — who met first when Grier was enjoying for BU and Quinn was teaching Northeastern University within the Nineties — would discuss hockey on these summer time days, again when neither knew they might at some point work collectively, constructing on the philosophies they’d discovered they’d in widespread.”When I was coaching at BU, we spent a lot of time at BU, watched practices,” Quinn mentioned. “We talked before practice, after practice. I just think instinctively we do see the game in a very similar way. We have the same level of expectations. There will be respectful disagreements, like there are with everybody in hockey — hockey’s a very subjective game.”But I feel what makes this example distinctive is we had a excessive stage of familiarity with one another.”It all goes back to Jack Parker, Grier explained. The legendary BU coach led both men as players, Quinn from 1984-88 and Grier from 1993-96. He helped develop both Grier and Quinn, later hiring Quinn as associate head coach, forming a foundation that would help bind them as they discovered commonalities in the ways they saw the game.They found themselves aligned, on ideas and ways of playing, on concepts and philosophy.”That’s for positive,” Grier said, of the two men being in sync. “I feel it was an enormous issue within the course of — how I see the sport and the way he sees the sport. They mesh properly. That’s not to say that we can’t push, problem one another, if we see issues in another way to assist us get higher and transfer ahead. But that is positively part of it.”They know that this will not be easy. The Sharks are coming off three seasons out of the Stanley Cup Playoffs after reaching the Western Conference Final in 2019, when they lost to the eventual Cup champion St. Louis Blues in six games.San Jose has lost some of its biggest names and most important faces since that time — Joe Thornton, Joe Pavelski and Brent Burns are all gone, with Burns leaving via trade to the Carolina Hurricanes on July 13.It is, quite clearly, a new era for the Sharks. And Grier and Quinn believe they are the team to lead them into their next phase.”My teaching philosophy has all the time been relationship-driven,” Quinn said. “I do not care what you do in life, if you do not have a connection to the individuals that you simply’re main, whether or not you are a supervisor of an workplace or teaching a hockey staff, you are not going to get essentially the most out of individuals.”When the people you’re leading know you care about them and want what’s best for them, you’ve got a much better chance to get the most out of them.”Which might simply as simply have been Grier’s reply for a part of why he employed Quinn.And it does not cease there. John McCarthy was named coach of the San Jose Barracuda, the Sharks affiliate within the American Hockey League, on May 18. McCarthy performed for Quinn from 2005-09, when Quinn was the affiliate head coach of BU.”The fact that he and I have a previous relationship — and an awful lot of respect for each other personally and professionally — I think will make our relationship with the Barracuda unique,” Quinn mentioned. “So obviously our communication will be consistent, it will be often and there will be no surprises on what’s going on with our American Hockey League team.”As for the NHL staff, it’s one which each Quinn and Grier are life like about. The Sharks might battle to rating, as they did final season in averaging the third-fewest objectives per sport within the NHL (2.57), behind the Arizona Coyotes (2.51) and Philadelphia Flyers (2.56).”We’re going to push, try and make the playoffs,” Grier mentioned. “If we don’t, we know we’ll have been competitive all season long. In every game the team will have put out an effort we can be proud of. And if we’re not quite there yet, we’re not quite there yet.”Quinn used phrases like tenacious and up-tempo and aggressive to describe the staff he needed to coach, a staff that may be, as he put it, “ultracompetitive.””I think a lot of the answers are in that locker room,” Quinn mentioned. “If we can get everybody to be just a little bit better. We’re not asking a guy to go from five goals to 40. We’re not asking a guy to do a thing he’s not capable of doing. But what we want everybody to do is do the things they can do just a little bit better.”If you have received 23 individuals being 5 to 10 p.c higher, that is the distinction between making the playoffs and never.”Photo courtesy: Amanda Cain/San Jose Sharks