The Minnesota Wild's search for a new coach looks to be heating up as Mike Russo from the Minneapolis Star Tribunereports that Craig MacTavish has been interviewed by the team. According to Russo, the coach and GM Chuck Fletcher met in a Toronto hotel.
MacTavish is a bit of a surprise, as he is a defensive minded coach, which deviates from the "up-tempo" style Fletcher tried to bring in with former coach Todd Richards. Richards struggled to make his system work with the players on the roster, and missed the playoffs in his only two seasons with the team. Fletcher fired Richards the day after the season ended.
While the process of selecting a coach has begun, do not expect any decisions quickly. The Wild have their eyes on several top candidates, including Mike Yeo who is currently coaching the Houston Aeros in the second round of the Calder Cup playoffs. Other names, according to Russo, could include Bruce Boudreau, who will likely be fired by the Washington Capitals, Chicago Blackhawks assistant Mike Haviland, and Peter DeBoer formerly of the Florida Panthers.
Fletcher has made it clear NHL experience is not a requirement, but with the pressure on the next coach to perform, expect the next bench boss to be a big name with control of his players, and of the game.