DENVER – Hall of Fame goaltender Patrick Roy has denied being offered the Colorado Avalanche’s coaching job, a position currently held by Tony Granato.
The Denver Post reported Monday that Roy had received an offer and was mulling it over. The Avalanche declined comment on the report, which cited anonymous league sources.
Later Monday, a spokeswoman for the junior league club Roy co-owns and coaches told The Associated Press that Roy had not received an offer from his old NHL team.
“I talked to him this morning and he said all those reports are speculation, he never received a formal offer,” said Nicole Bouchard, director of media relations for the Quebec Remparts of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
Roy is also general manager of the Remparts.
Bouchard said Roy wasn’t available for interviews. Earlier, he said: “I never received an offer … but anyway, I’m not commenting.”
Roy met with Avs president Pierre Lacroix in Denver on May 7, about three weeks after general manager Francois Giguere was fired following Colorado’s last-place finish in the West. Colorado’s 32-45-5 mark was the franchise’s worst since moving from Quebec to Denver in 1995.
Although the team wouldn’t say what the meeting was about, it was the first indication that Granato’s job might be in danger. The team hasn’t commented on Granato’s status since then.
Granato has two years left on his contract.
Roy won Stanley Cup titles in Colorado in 1996 and 2001 after a standout career with the Montreal Canadiens. He retired in 2003 and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2006.
He coached his two sons with the Remparts last season, when all three drew suspensions for ugly incidents. Frederick Roy got 15 games for high-sticking eight months after his brother, Jonathan, received a seven-game penalty for participating in an on-ice fight. That fight also resulted in a five-game suspension for Patrick Roy for encouraging his son during the fisticuffs.
The incident prompted Quebec’s sports minister to create a committee to address the issue of gratuitous violence in hockey.
Former Colorado coach Joel Quenneville, in Detroit for the Chicago Blackhawks’ Game 2 of the Western Conference final against the Red Wings, said Roy has a great hockey IQ.
“Patrick, you know, he’s one of those players that was pretty amazing the time I was around him,” Quenneville said. “Not too many guys have that level of thinking as players. It’s almost an elite level of the knowledge of the game, the technical part of it. He’s done very well for himself with his organization in Quebec. I know how competitive it is.
“You know, I haven’t been really around him as a coach. You got to give him some kudos for the job he’s done there.”
The Avalanche, whose 199 goals were the fewest in the NHL last season, have salary cap issues facing their next general manager and whoever coaches them next year.
The team has only about US$10 million to $12 million in which to fill out the roster because 14 players have contracts that account for nearly $44 million next year. That doesn’t include captain Joe Sakic, who spent most of the year on the injured list, and either goaltender, Peter Budaj and Andrew Raycroft, who are unsigned for next season.