Ron Hextall was asked a multitude of questions about his head coach, Craig Berube, on Wednesday at the Flyers' year-end press conference.
Hextall said that Berube still has his job, but didn't exactly give Chief a vote of confidence, which will no doubt lead to more speculation about the future of the coaching position with the Philadelphia Flyers organization.
Here's exactly what Hextall's responses were to every coaching related question he was asked on Wednesday. The transcript is via the Flyers' public relations staff but we've looked it over for accuracy.
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He's our head coach and if something changes I'll let you guys know. At this point in the process... we're going to evaluate everything, as I said, and at this point the decision hasn't been made.
On whether the decision has to do with whoever else is available:
No. This is singular in itself. There's no waiting around to see if someone comes available or what else is out there. It's not part of the equation.
On waiting to make a decision when other teams already have:
The wait is that I'm going to be methodical. I want to make the right decision. I'm not going to make a quick decision to appease people, or to follow along like it's supposed to be done. I'm going to do everything I can to do the due diligence that's appropriate to make the decision. Once I get there, then we'll let people know. I'm not going to make a hasty decision and look back and regret it. I'm going to do everything I can to gather all the information out there and make the right decision. That goes for a lot of decisions we have to make.
On a timetable:
I'd like to make it as soon as possible in fairness to Chief. So we'll keep working at it, and as soon as we get there...
Everybody operates differently. I'm not a knee-jerk type of a guy. I typically go through a process before making decisions rather than make hasty decisions. I guess for some people it's the way to go. For me it's not.
Have you and Berube talked?
We talked on Sunday, I think it was.
On Berube's reaction:
He was fine with it.
What are you looking at in the evaluation?
I'm not going to get into details. It's essentially an evaluation of the job he did.
On whether Berube coming back with one year on his contract makes him a lame duck:
I have no idea. I haven't thought that far through. I'll just make the decision and we'll go from there.
On whether Hextall advises on lineup decisions:
No. Those are his decisions. As a manager you talk to your coach about what he's thinking, but I never told him once who to put in or who not to put in. We talk about things... we're both hockey people, we have a sense for the team, so we talk about things, but in the end, he goes down to his coaches huddles and he makes decisions. That's his job. I don't want to coach, and I'm not one of those guys who has a big influence on the lineup. I don't believe in it.
On the pros and cons to keeping and evaluating further:
It's just a decision that's going to be made, for better or for worse. I'm not going to get into the details of what I'm looking at or why or how long. In the end, [I don't think I'll] explain every detail I'm going to go through.
Does not making the playoffs fall on the players or the head coach?
It's all of the above including me. We're all working towards the same thing. I put the players on the ice, Chief coaches them and the players play. I don't think there was one player I met with Monday or Tuesday that was happy with their season, including Jake Voracek, Claude Giroux, Michael Del Zotto and Mark Streit ... guys that had, by the numbers, pretty good years. I don't think anybody's happy sitting here today.
On whether Berube made any mistakes:
That's a question for him I think. I'm evaluating, but if you're asking me whether he made any mistakes or not, that's probably a question for him, I'd think. Some of our players probably didn't play well enough. I think that's fair to say.
On if there's a timeframe on Berube:
No, but I'd like to do it as soon as possible, because I don't like the position that Chief's in right now.
Do you consult with other people?
I have a staff, I use my staff for a lot of things. Might as well use more minds than one, right?
The coach is tasked with squeezing the most out of the players that he can. How much of a concern is what you didn't get from your secondary players?
That's what you want from your coach -- to get the most out of all your players. You're never probably going to get 100 percent. That's what you're hoping for. That's part of the evaluation process, for sure. That's how you evaluate a coach -- did he get the most out of the players, did he use them in the right situation, things like that. Some of them, it's the cart and the horse. Did the player play himself down? As far as the roster moves and stuff, if we're sitting here in the playoffs right now nobody's talking about lines or anything else. You look at the top teams in the league and there's still a lot of movement over the course of the season. It's part of the way you motivate players, putting them in different situations, maybe you give a guy a little more when he's playing well, a little less when he's not. It's all part of it. Again, you've got to look at your players too. If they're not giving you everything they can or they're complaining about this or that, you've got to take a peek at that too, and try to figure out what's going on.