Blackhawks’ Joel Quenneville ranked No. 3 best Chicago coach of all time
Eight Blackhawks coaches ranked among top 40 in Chicago sports history by the Chicago Tribune.
Chicago Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville is third best coach in Chicago sports history, according to a Chicago Tribune panel.
Only the Chicago Bulls’ Phil Jackson and Chicago Bears’ George Halas rank higher than Quenneville. The Chicago Cubs’ Frank Chance and Bears’ Mike Ditka round out the top five at fourth and fifth, respectively.
Quenneville is among eight Blackhawks coaches to make the Tribune’s top 40 list. The others include Billy Reay (13), Rudy Pilous (15), Mike Keenan (16), Darryl Sutter (34), Orval Tessier (33), Paul Thompson (37) and Bob Pulford (39). Shockingly, Tommy Gorman and Bill Stewart didn’t make the cut. Gorman took the Hawks from last place in the division to the franchise’s first Stanley Cup in 1934. Stewart also led Chicago to a Cup championship in his first season in 1938.
Quenneville has won three Stanley Cups with Chicago and his 413 wins rank only behind Reay in franchise history. He has also guided the Hawks to nine consecutive trips to the postseason.
Pulford coached the Hawks on five different occasions, often splitting time as general manager. He’s third in franchise history in coaching wins. Thompson took over the Hawks after the 1938 Cup win and guided them back to the Cup Final in 1944.
Largely know for his tenure on the ice with Chicago, Sutter also spent three seasons behind the bench highlighted by a Campbell Conference-best 106-point season in 1992-93. Tessier also spent three seasons as coach and is the only Hawks coach to win the Jack Adams Award for being the NHL’s coach of the year in 1983.
Keenan led the Hawks to the postseason four straight times, including to the 1992 Stanley Cup Final. Pilous guided the Hawks to the 1961 Stanley Cup. Reay coached the Hawks for 14 seasons and led them to the Cup Final (1965, 1971, 1973), but lost to Montreal each time.
The Cubs and White Sox are the most represented on the list with 10. The Hawks’ eight bench bosses are second, followed by the Bears and Bulls at five. The Chicago Fire and Chicago Sting soccer clubs each have one while the WNBA’s Chicago Sky has none.
Chicago Tribune top 10
- Phil Jackson (Bulls)
- George Halas (Bears)
- Joel Quenneville (Blackhawks)
- Frank Chance (Cubs)
- Mike Ditka (Bears)
- Joe Maddon (Cubs)
- Ozzie Guillen (White Sox)
- Charlie Grimm (Cubs)
- Fielder Jones (White Sox)
- Al Lopez (White Sox)