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Dan Cloutier, Roland Melanson switch roles for Canucks

The Vancouver Canucks have had one of the most reliable and competent goaltending development systems in the NHL over the last few years, with Roland Melanson coaching at the NHL level for the past six seasons and the up-and-coming Dan Cloutier serving as the development coach in the American Hockey League for the past four.

There were reports late in the season Melanson would leave the Canucks when his contract expired this summer, in large part because of his family situation. It would have been a blow to an organization with a strong track record of developing goaltenders under his watch, but now they’ve confirmed that the two goaltending coaches have simply swapped roles.

Vancouver announced Tuesday that Cloutier has been named the new goaltending coach for the Canucks for the upcoming 2016-17 season, while Melanson will work with the Utica Comets and other prospects as the team’s goaltending development coach moving forward, a part-time role that allows him to stay closer to family back east and ease off on his work load.

Melanson had other NHL opportunities, which isn’t surprising considering the role he played in the development of Cory Schneider, Eddie Lack and Jacob Markstrom during his time with the Canucks. Multiple sources have confirmed to InGoal Magazine that Melanson was the first choice for the still vacant Ottawa Senators goaltending coach position. Instead, he opted to remain in Vancouver’s system, keeping the coaches who have worked with some of Vancouver’s best goaltenders close at hand at both the major and minor league level, an important development with highly touted NCAA prospect Thatcher Demko turning pro this season.

Per the Canucks, head coach Willie Desjardins suggests that the news is especially good, as Cloutier is familiar with Markstrom. He worked with him extensively during his stint with the Comets; bringing the coach that coaxed some of Markstrom’s best numbers out to help him full-time at the NHL level should be good for the team’s development in net.

There has been plenty of turmoil for the Canucks in recent weeks. Controversial trades have put the Pacific Division club, who missed the postseason and will draft fifth overall this summer, in the spotlight league-wide; it’s nice to see the club make an announcement that few can spin as anything but beneficial for the team at all levels involved.

About The Author

Cat Silverman

Catherine is the first American in a long line of Canadians, making her the black sheep before she even decided she wasn't going to be a Leafs fan. Writer for Today's Slapshot, InGoal Magazine, and, coach in the Arizona Coyotes Department of Hockey Development. Goalies are not voodoo.

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4 days ago
Lots of love for Jac



Lots of love for Jacob Markstrom’s beautiful new Bauer Vapor 1X custom graphics, but did you know he wasn’t really the first to wear it? When we talked to him around Christmas about the custom design we knew was coming, he said it was already on the pads worn by fellow Swede Filip Gustavsson at the World Junior Hockey championships. Look closely at the background graphic of Gustavsson’s pads (scroll through) and other than eliminating the solid block on the top corners, looks like he was right. Still gorgeous though. #InGoalisInTheRoom

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