Monday, November 04, 2013

Where's all the antipathy coming from in regards to UND head coach Dave Hakstol

Game five and six on the season and the Fire Hakstol thread is already made it's first appearance of the season on Sioux Sports. I will be covering this topic more this week. This is a post that I originally Posted at the Hockey Writers Combine, a site that I used to write for that's no longer active. P.S Hak isn't going any where. UND isn't going to fire him. 
Recently, ESPN posted an article that was written by Craig Custance on their Internet site (subscription required) about possible future coaching candidates for NHL and AHL jobs. UND head coach Dave Hakstol was listed as the top college coach candidates by Custance. I mean, it makes sense to me.  I have always been a big advocate of coach Hakstol’s work and I think he’s a very good college hockey coach.
Naturally, UND Hockey beat writer Brad Schlossman posted a quote from the article on his media blog.  Why not? The head coach of the team you cover just made a major publication and he’s getting major props. Kind of blows up the Hakstol hater’s story line as well.
Almost on cue, the haters came out to post their displeasure and thoughts about coach Hakstol.  It’s funny how brave people become when they can hide behind the anonymity of a computer screen and a fake name. None of these people, would have the guts to say these things to Dave’s face.
Top college coach candidate
Dave Hakstol, North Dakota — He runs the powerhouse North Dakota college hockey program, one that continues to pump out NHL players such as Jonathan Toews, T.J. Oshie, Travis Zajac, Drew Stafford and Matt Greene.
“This guy is really intelligent,” said one NHL source. “I think he’s got a pro mind.”
Hakstol signed a six-year contract in 2012 that would keep him behind the bench in North Dakota through 2017-18 and said his focus is on sustaining his success there.
“I have a high level of respect for the guys who are able to produce successful and sustainable results at the NHL level. At some point in my career if I was able to earn an opportunity to work with a good organization, it would be a consideration,” Hakstol wrote in an email on Monday when asked whether he has NHL interest. “All that being said, I don’t spend much time thinking about hypotheticals. I feel like our entire staff has been around the game long enough to have a real appreciation for what we have here and has a commitment to producing that long-term success and sustainability at UND.”
So if you look at Coach Hakstol’s impressive resume, he’s lacking “one thing” an NCAA title. My question is; does this impressive resume deserve this much scrutiny, angst and antipathy? I don’t know, I don’t believe it does.
Years at UND: 9
235-119-37 (.648)
NCAA Appearances: 9
NCAA Frozen Four Appearances: 5
NCAA Championship Appearances: 1
WCHA Final Five Appearances: 9
WCHA Final Five Championships: 4
WCHA Final Five Championship Appearances: 5
WCHA MacNaughton Cup Championships: 2
I guess I don’t understand where the flames of discontent are coming from? The coaching staff at the University of North Dakota is second to none. All three coaches played hockey at UND. All three coaches have played professionally in the NHL, AHL or IHL, so they have the experience necessary to play at the next level. Dane Jackson (AHL) and Brad Berry (NHL) have coach in the professional ranks. Not a lot of Division I hockey programs can make that claim.
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