Joel Quenneville opened his Tuesday night conference call by quelling all rumors about a potential departure from the Chicago Blackhawks.
Coach Q on media call: "First and foremost, I'm excited about being in Chicago." #Blackhawks— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) May 8, 2012
Quenneville continued by saying that the firing of assistant coach Mike Haviland was his decision, citing "dysfunction" on the coaching staff that led to the ultimate decision to let Haviland go. Haviland was a member of the coaching staff before Quenneville's 2008 hire, and that's led to some speculation from Blackhawks blog Second City Hockey.
This is where the intrigue begins. Haviland was not Quenneville's hire. He was here when Q got here. Mike Kitchen, which most of the hockey world agrees is a complete boob, was Quenneville's hire. And he's still here. Haviland is not. Also, the big rumor around the organization was that Haviland was the next one in line whenever Quenneville hit the bricks.
Quenneville, for what it's worth, claimed that his friendly relationship with Mike Kitchen had nothing to do with the decision to fire Haviland.