Bruce Cassidy of the Boston Bruins, John Tortorella of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Alain Vigneault of the Philadelphia Flyers are the three finalists for the 2019-20 Jack Adams Award, presented annually to the NHL’s coach of the year.
Under Cassidy, the Bruins (44-14-12 in 70 GP) topped the NHL in both points (100) and points percentage (.714) to claim the Presidents’ Trophy as the NHL’s best club during the regular season.
Boston posted a league-best 44 wins, including 22 victories as both hosts (22-4-9) and visitors (22-10-3).
The Bruins, who reached the 40-win milestone for the seventh consecutive season, also posted an NHL-best plus-53 goal differential.
Tortorella guided the Blue Jackets to a .579 points percentage (33-22-15) at the time of the NHL’s March 12 suspension of the season because of the COVID-19 pandemic. That put them among Eastern Conference Stanley Cup qualifiers as the No. 9-ranked team.
The Blue Jackets recorded points in 33 of their final 41 games after Dec. 8 (22-8-11), highlighted by a pair of double-digit point streaks in that span: 12 games (8-0-4 from Dec. 9 to Jan. 2) and 10 games (9-0-1 from Jan. 11 to Feb. 7).
In his first season behind the Philadelphia bench, Vigneault led the Flyers to a .645 points percentage (41-21-7) at the pause, their best since a .646 mark in 2010-11 and third-best in 30 years. The Flyers vaulted into the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference and a spot in the seeding round robin of the Stanley Cup qualifiers with a nine-game winning streak from Feb. 18 to March 7, eight of which were decided in regulation.
Vigneault is a Jack Adams finalist for the fifth time, with his fourth club. He captured the award in 2006-07 with Vancouver.