Dallas Stars Issues: Rick Bowness’ favoritism and old-school style.
Rick Bowness is an old-school coach and the longest-tenured in the league. Spanning 5 decades, his record leaves much to be desired. A career win percentage of .362 with 2 playoff appearances as head coach will tell the tale. While he may have taken both teams deep into the playoffs, Bowness was riding the coattails of coaches that came before him. Boston lost the cup two years prior and lost the conference finals the year before he took the helm. In Dallas, Bowness took over a team that lost in 2OT to the St. Louis Blues who would go on to win the Stanley Cup just one year prior. During the Stanley Cup Finals against Tampa Bay, Bowness really brought his style of play onto the table. Bowness is a dump and chase coach, which is problematic for an injury-ridden team facing a goalie who can play the puck like a 6th skater in Andrei Vasilevskiy. This style of play only leads to offensive chances for the lightning and subsequently, goals scored against. To this day, the dump and chase style of play is prevalent in Bowness’ coaching scheme. It didn’t work then, it doesn’t work now.
Rick Bowness is a players coach and that works great as an assistant, but being a players coach leads to favoritism amongst the players he’s been around the most. Having worked alongside Ben Bishop in Tampa Bay, you could see how that affected his decisions in pulling Bishop Vs Anton Khudobin, allowing Bishop to dig too far into a hole before trying to remedy the situation. Your Head Coach isn’t meant to be your friend, he’s meant to push you further than you’ve ever gone and shown you just who you can be. Bowness shows that he’d rather be your friend. He is a key contributor in the Stars struggles this season. The stats just go to show he is not Head Coach material. If the Stars want to grow and get out of this slump, they need a new coach with new schemes to match the players coming in.