The Washington Capitals officially named Todd Reirden as head coach on Friday.
Reirden becomes the 18th head coach in franchise history. The move comes 22 days following the team’s first Stanley Cup championship in its 44-year history.
Reirden, 47, the internal successor to Barry Trotz — who is now the head coach of the New York Islanders — is becoming the lead man for the first time in his career. He has spent the past four years in the Capitals organization, two as an assistant coach from 2014-16 and two as associate coach from 2016-18.
Contract details have not been disclosed yet.
Before joining Washington, Reirden spent four seasons as an assistant coach with the Pittsburgh Penguins under then head coach Dan Bylsma. He was also the head coach of the Penguins’ minor league affiliate Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins from 2008 until Bylsma was promoted in 2009.
The Capitals finally overcame the elephant in the room when they eliminated the Penguins in the Stanley Cup Playoffs this season, and Reirden’s ability to work with the team’s defense during his tenure proved key. Last offseason, the organization lost Karl Alzner and Kevin Shattenkirk to unrestricted free agency, and lost Nate Schmidt in the Expansion Draft to the Vegas Golden Knights.
As a player, Reirden played for four different franchises from 1998-2004 (Edmonton Oilers, St. Louis Blues, Atlanta Thrashers and Phoenix Coyotes), missing the entire 2002-03 regular season. He accumulated 46 points (11 goals, 35 assists) in 183 career games.