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04-13-2013, 07:20 AM
  #99
Sturminator
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overpass View Post
Good find. I have definitely seen Gorman get credit for coaching the Sens before, which is why I questioned Pete Green's role. That makes things a little clearer.
Yeah, the exact management structure of those Ottawa teams is still difficult to determine, but I think it's clear that Gorman and Gerard played a larger role in the "coaching" duties (according to a modern definition of the word) than has been generally credited to this point. I don't want to oversell Gorman but yes, there is pretty strong evidence that he was not just a front office guy, but had an active role with the team (like you, I have also seen mention of this from primary sources in the period). From the bio:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Legends of Hockey
Gorman gradually took over most of the responsibilities with the Ottawa franchise and was one of the founding members of the National Hockey League in 1917. Most significantly, he was the club's manager where he was a strong motivator and astute judge of talent and character.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Montreal Canadiens’ official website
When he joined the Canadiens in 1940, Gorman possessed a hockey resume which already spoke for itself. He had four Stanley Cups to his credit, including a pair earned behind the bench with the Ottawa Senators in 1920 and 1923, one with Chicago in 1934, and another with the Montreal Maroons in 1935. The latter pair of championships made him the only coach in league history to win consecutive Cups with different teams.
Now, these are not direct sources and may not be entirely reliable, so it's hard to say. I think Gorman definitely played an important role in the lockerroom of that Sens team as a motivator, and we know that he sat behind the bench in the 1923-24 season. The Habs website says that he sat behind the bench in 1920 and 1923, as well, though I don't know if that's true and if so, what it really means. In the "starters and subs" era, the actual bench boss may not have been all that important to the "coaching" of a team.

What is interesting about that Habs site quote is that it only lists Gorman as sitting behind the bench in those two seasons, rather than for all three of Ottawa's championships in this period. The fact that 1921 is left out suggests to me that the claims on the Habs site may be true, as it would be strange to specifically leave out one year if they were not in possession of real information.

Given Green and Gerard's comparatively small historical stature and Gorman's dramatic success as a defensive system coach later in his career, one wonders if Gorman wasn't the chief architect of the system that those dynasty Sens teams were running. If this could ever be clearly shown to be true, Gorman would have a claim to being the greatest coach in hockey history, though at this point it's still unclear to whom and in what proportion the credit for the management of those dynasty Sens teams should really go.


Last edited by Sturminator: 04-13-2013 at 04:14 PM.
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