NHL

Source: Rangers set to interview Vigneault

06/11 11:18 AM

Alain Vigneault is expected to interview with the New York Rangers for their vacant coaching job Tuesday, a source confirmed to ESPNNewYork.com.

Alain Vigneault is expected to interview with the New York Rangers for their vacant coaching job Tuesday, a source confirmed to ESPNNewYork.com.

The New York Post first reported Vigneault's interview with the Rangers.

The 52-year-old Vigneault was fired by Vancouver after the Canucks were swept by San Jose in the first round of the playoffs. The Quebec native arrived Monday in California, where he will have an audience of Rangers executives and staff members as they hold their annual organizational meetings at general manager Glen Sather's compound.

Vigneault made the trek to La Quinta, Calif., after speaking with the Dallas Stars, multiple sources confirmed. He is considered to be a top coaching candidate for both the Rangers and the Stars.

Sather said after dismissing John Tortorella that he'd like to have a new coach in place by the NHL draft, which is to be held on June 30 in Newark, New Jersey.

In addition to Vigneault, the Rangers also obtained permission to speak with former Buffalo Sabres coach Lindy Ruff and Dallas Eakins, who is no longer available after being named head coach of the Edmonton Oilers on Monday.

The Rangers' own Mark Messier, who is in La Quinta as an executive within the organization, also has expressed interest in New York's coaching job. The iconic captain led the Rangers to a Stanley Cup championship in 1994, though he has no NHL coaching experience.

Another potential candidate on the Rangers' radar is Pittsburgh Penguins coach Dan Bylsma, should Penguins general manager Ray Shero decide to let him go.

Though Bylsma won a Stanley Cup with the Penguins in 2009 and is a former Jack Adams Award recipient, Pittsburgh suffered an embarrassing result in the Eastern Conference finals, where they were swept by the Boston Bruins.

If Bylsma indeed becomes available, the Rangers and other teams likely will be keenly interested.

In addition to their search for a new head coach, the Rangers also have some other items on the agenda to discuss during meetings this week.

The Rangers will evaluate the possibility of exercising their one existing compliance buyout on veteran center Brad Richards. They are also likely to formulate a plan for locking up franchise goaltender Henrik Lundqvist and key restricted free agents Ryan McDonagh, Carl Hagelin and Derek Stepan.

Multiple sources told ESPNNewYork.com that the two sides have engaged in initial contract talks for McDonagh, though those discussions have been preliminary to this point.


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