The San Diego Gulls, AHL affiliate of the Anaheim Ducks, have announced that they’ve re-signed former Edmonton Oilers head coach Dallas Eakins, to a multi-year contract extension.
Eakins has put up a respectable 118-71-10-5 in three seasons with the Gulls. He has helped the organization develop young players like Brandon Montour, Odrej Kase, Nick Ritchie and John Gibson. It’s also worth nothing that his assistant coach Marty Wilford has been promoted to the NHL to coach alongside current Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle. This creates an interesting dynamic wherein should Carlyle be fired during, either this offseason or during the 2018-19 season, Eakins will be able to step into the Ducks’ head coach job with his usual right hand man already in place.
If nothing else, this news should put an even bigger focus on Carlyle and the Ducks’ performance next season. Following a run to the Western Conference Final in 2016-17, the Ducks stumbled into the playoffs in 2017-18 and promptly bowed out to the San Jose Sharks in a four game sweep. Should the team stumble at all in 2018-19, don’t be surprised if Carlyle is shown the door in favor of Eakins.
Here’s the full press release of the hiring courtesy of the Ducks’ official website:
The Ducks have signed San Diego (AHL) Head Coach Dallas Eakins to a multi-year contract extension.
"Dallas has provided valuable leadership in San Diego since the Gulls arrived over three seasons ago," said Executive Vice President/General Manager Bob Murray. "He has helped create a winning tradition and a successful development program with our AHL affiliate. His contract extension is a testament to that."
Eakins has led San Diego to a 118-71-10-5 record (.615% points percentage) and a pair of appearances in the Pacific Division Finals in 2016 and 2017. Named to his current post on June 26, 2015, Eakins will be behind the Gulls bench for his fourth consecutive season in 2018-19. The Dade City, Fla. native previously served as Head Coach of the NHL's Edmonton Oilers from 2013-14 (113 games) after spending eight years in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization.
Eakins was Head Coach of the Toronto Marlies (AHL) from 2009-13, leading the team to a 157-114-41 record in 312 games. The Marlies finished atop the North Division during Eakins' final two seasons behind the bench winning four of six playoff series. In 2012 and 2013, Eakins was named as one of two head coaches representing the Western Conference for the AHL All-Star Games. During the 2011-12 campaign, Eakins led the Marlies to a division-best 44-24-8 record and an appearance in the Calder Cup Final. Eakins has a career 275-185-25-31 record as Head Coach in the AHL.
Selected by Washington in the 10th round (208th overall) of the 1985 NHL Draft, Eakins appeared in 120 career NHL games with the Winnipeg Jets, Florida Panthers, St. Louis Blues, Phoenix Coyotes, New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Islanders and Calgary Flames.