So far in our first three parts of the Blackhawks Coach Profile series, we have investigated coaches that have been mentioned by critics, media, and beat writers as legitimate options for the Blackhawks vacant head coaching position. So far, I've covered Rick Tocchet, Claude Julien, and Jim Montgomery. For part four, I've decided to go a little bit out of left field, to use a baseball analogy. This one seems to be a fan favorite on Twitter, so let's roll with it: Brent Seabrook.
"Coach Seabs" I like the sound of it, to be frank. But what even is the genesis of this idea? Is he a real option for the Blackhawks?
The rumors started bubbling up not long after an announcement by the WHL's Vancouver Giants that they were bringing on Seabrook as an interim, volunteer assistant coach to help replace a coach who had left to coach World Juniors. With the announcement of this coaching experience for Seabrook, Blackhawks Twitter has had its pockets foaming at the mouth to see the former alternate captain and Blackhawks great find his way behind the bench as a coach.
Even with limited coaching experience, we can see how Brent Seabrook could make sense as a head coach. He was a hard worker when he played on the Blackhawks and that work never went unnoticed. He was a stud defenseman and multi-time All-Star. He finished in the top 20 of Norris Trophy voting three times as well. He was a leader in every sense of the word. He has seen success, but also the bottom of the barrel as he was drafted in 2005 before the Blackhawks rose to prominence. Likewise, he saw first hand the collapse on the back end of success. He knows what it's like to work through trials and tribulations. I can see it. I really can.
But absolutely not right now. I'm sorry to all those who wanted him as coach. I don't mean to be a dream squasher, but Seabrook as a head coach after a volunteer interim stint in the WHL just does not cut it for me. This team needs some serious direction and taking a shot and experimenting with a former player as coach just seems risky to me. I'm afraid it would do more harm than good.
But that doesn't mean we won't see Seabrook as a coach in the NHL sometime soon. I do think he has the potential to fill that role.