NHL: Should Dallas Stars Remove “Interim” Tag From Rick Bowness?

The Dallas Stars are in an interesting position right now. With the fate of the current season up in the air, fans are asking one question. Should the Stars remove the “Interim” tag from head coach Rick Bowness? That question can be answered in one word: “No”.

Keeping Bowness as head coach would prevent the Stars from having yet another coaching change, yes. That is a positive considering he took over for Jim Montgomery. The firing of Montgomery caught many by surprise. As luck would have it, it had to be done. Montgomery’s reasons for being relieved of his duties was under wraps for a short while. But, in January, the news would come out and Montgomery was headed to rehab.

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December 10, 2019, he was named interim head coach of the Stars. At the time of his promotion, Bowness was 123-289-51 as a head coach.

The Pros of Bowness

After the Stars learned about Montgomery’s firing, they really seemed to rally around each other. Big victories at the Winter Classic and evening a sweep of the Colorado Avalanche should be considered when Bowness’s time comes at the negotiation table. The Stars have consistently been at or near the top of the Central Division, and we’re in a position to find their way out of a slump before the virus put the season in limbo.

The Stars seemed to have a renewed desire to succeed for each other under Bowness. However, the latest slump left many within the Stars fanbase asking if he could lead the Stars to something big. There are two winning seasons to Bownesses’s name as a head coach. Before the virus halted this one, 2019-2020 would have been another. Bowness has a great mix of players, he just has to figure the right fit for each player. Once the mixture is complete, the wins will roll in.

The Cons of Bowness

One thing that everyone seemed to notice was the first couple of big wins. As the Stars underwent a coaching change to him, Bowness proved to be instrumental in the transition. Everyone on the Stars roster was familiar with Bowness and his coaching style. The players started to turn around the power play, and everyone found an important role on the Stars roster.

Not long after the Stars were successful, they tasted what it would be like had they continued to play during their 1-7-1 start. Just as fast as the Stars we’re gaining momentum, they cooled off. Headed for their (seemingly) typical late-season slump, the only player to remain consistent was Anton Khudobin. Before the virus outbreak, the Stars sputtered. Many within the Stars fan community noticed, and so did the media. Keeping Bowness will show the fans what the players are capable of. They are no stranger to adversity this season, and seeing the players pull out of a late slump would put many minds at ease.

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Final Thoughts

The morale of the players from the coaching change to now – well, it didn’t change. Or at least it didn’t change publicly. The Stars found their stride after a slow start and were headed into another collapse. Regardless, anyone watching could see the imprint of Bowness start to show on the Stars. As hard as it is to read, it’s equally hard to write. But hear me out – The Stars needed the late-season slump. The Stars overcoming adversity will be the deciding factor in keeping Bowness. Furthermore, the ability to overcome adversity shows the desire of each player to keep Bowness. The coaching staff is in the midst of something great with this group. As fans speculate on players buying into the coaching strategy, a taste of success will change many minds.

Expanding on that – the players have someone familiar in Bowness. Should the Stars bring in yet another coach, the players will have to learn a whole new system. A new system is not what the Stars need at this time. Player and coach development is at stake. Player and coach rapport is at stake. But then again, nothing is ever guaranteed. Given the Stars’ success, Bowness could be a suitable coach. Conversely, like seasons past, we could see the team fold as others have under his leadership. Bowness isn’t very synonymous with success as his record shows. But, if he leaves, the players will have to start over – AGAIN.

How do you feel about Rick Bowness as head coach of the Dallas Stars? Leave a comment below.

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