MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minnesota Wild has fired head coach Todd Richards.
The team made the announcement Monday morning.
WCCO-TV’s Mark Rosen said one name that could be considered as a possible successor is Ken Hitchcock, though that decision is a long ways away.
The Wild’s season ended Sunday with a 5-3 win over Dallas, which kept the Stars out of playoff contention.
Richards, 44, had a 77-71-16 record in two seasons as the Wild’s head coach. He took over for Jacques Lemaire, the only other coach in franchise history.
In both seasons under Richards, the Wild was in playoff contention through the winter. However, the team ended both seasons without a playoff appearance.
On the Minnesota Wild’s website, Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher posted a statement regarding the firing of Richards.
“I would like to thank Todd for the hard work he provided to the Minnesota Wild organization the last two seasons and wish him the best in the future,” the statement said.
Fletcher also admitted the decision was a tough one to make.
“Todd and his staff worked extremely hard to help this team win hockey games and ultimately these are tough decisions. I just felt going forward we needed a new voice to lead this team into next season. Certainly, the disappointment of not making the playoffs had a part in this, but I also feel that going forward we needed a new voice; we needed a new direction. Once you come to that decision the important thing is – for the organization and for the individuals affected – the important thing is to do it as quickly as possible,” the statement continued.
Stay tuned to WCCO-TV and WCCO.com for more updates as they become available.