Winnipeg Jets sign head coach Paul Maurice to multi-year extension

CBC

Winnipeg Jets have given a big vote of confidence to head coach Paul Maurice, signing him to a multi-year contract extension.

Despite some struggles this season that prompted speculation the 53-year-old Maurice's job could be on the chopping block, the Jets on Tuesday made it clear their coach isn't leaving anytime soon.

No details on the terms of the contract were released by the team.

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Maurice is not available to comment on the contract until Thursday, following a team practice. However, he is quoted in the Jets website saying he is elated to stay in the city, which has become home for him, his wife Michelle and their three children Sydney, Jake and Luke.

"Winnipeg has given us so much more than we've given the city," Maurice said in an article on the website.

"For my kids, their friends, my wife as well, this is truly our home now. Being able to stay and work — I think we were staying one way or another — but being able to stay and work for the Winnipeg Jets is perfect."

A native of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., Maurice joined the Jets on Jan. 12, 2014 and has led the club to a 264-186-53 regular season record in that time, along with an 11-16 win-loss record in the postseason.

The team fell just short of a trip to the Stanley Cup Championship series after reaching the Western Conference Final in 2018 but seeing their season end at the hands of the Vegas Golden Knights.

Maurice sits sixth in NHL history for games coached (1,587) and seventh for wins (724). His 502 games with the Jets trails only Tampa Bay's Jon Cooper for most games by any active coach with their current club.

Maurice's first head coaching stint in the NHL was with the Hartford Whalers in 1995. At age 28, he became the second youngest coach in NHL history.

"When I came into the league, I think half the team was older than I was. Now I'm about the age of their parents — and their parents are younger than me," Maurice said on the Jets website.

He remained coach when the Whalers franchise relocated to North Carolina in 1997 and were renamed the Carolina Hurricanes. He eventually moved on to coach the the head coach of the Maple Leafs from 2006–08  before going back to Carolina from 2008-12. 

In 2010, at age 43, Maurice became the youngest coach in NHL history to coach 1,000 games.

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