Puck-rakers reports that GM Scott Howson has been granted permission to interview the Blue Jackets first candidate for the open coaching position. Aaron Portzline speculates that the first interview belongs to Scott Arniel of the Manitoba Moose, the Vancouver Canucks' AHL affiliate.
The Blue Jackets clearly have interest in going with a fresh face for the open coaching spot, as top candidates are believed to be Kevin Dineen, Guy Boucher, Paul MacLean, Brent Peterson, Claude Noel, and Arniel.
I personally like all of these candidates for various reasons. How can you argue with the success the Detroit organization has had over the past two decades? MacLean would bring that winning attitude, and look at his former colleague on the Detroit staff, Todd MacLellan, and the success he is having in San Jose. A similar argument could be had for Brent Peterson, who coaches under Barry Trotz in Nashville. Imagine what the Jackets would look like today if they had hired Trotz ten years ago.
Meanwhile, with such a young roster and the success of other AHL-to-NHL coaches, Dineen has to be on top of the list. As the Dispatch has stated, Dineen can take bad teams and make them good, and good teams and make them great. He has ties to Columbus which makes it a natural fit.
If I were in charge, I would pick Dineen. He can bring back a spark of passion that we maybe haven't seen since the early days of the Blue Jackets. It's not all memories, though, as Dineen does possess a proven track record as a successful coach.
Who would you pick? Vote in the poll and let me hear it in the comments!