Tony Sparano (Chris J. Nelson, Wikimedia Commons)
It was a black Monday for three professional sports coaches.
Terry Murray of the Los Angeles Kings, Todd Haley of the Kansas City Chiefs and Tony Sparano of the Miami Dolphins all lost their jobs.
Murray, is only 13-12-4 with the Kings this season in the NHL, only good enough for 12th in the Western Conference. With the signing of Mike Richards in the off-season, expectations were significantly higher for Los Angeles. But Richards went out with a concussion, Drew Doughty has not played up to expectations, and after four consecutive losses, the Kings are on the outside looking in.
Murray is being replaced by John Stevens, who was the Kings’ assistant coach and has head coaching experience with the Philadelphia Flyers. He went 120-109-34 from 2006-2010.
In the NFL meanwhile, Romeo Crennel is taking over the coaching duties from Haley in Kansas City. Despite winning the AFC West a year ago, the Chiefs were last in the AFC West this year at 5-8. Crennel, the team’s defensive co-ordinator, has head coaching experience with the Cleveland Browns from 2005-08, where he went 24-40. The Chiefs, like the Kings, have had injury issues this season. Star quarterback Matt Cassel is out for the season with a hand injury, and backup Kyle Orton dislocated the finger on his throwing hand last week.
Also, Todd Bowles is taking over the head coaching duties from Tony Sparano in Miami. I will miss Sparano, because professional sports needs more head coaches with the excitement and enthusiasm that Sparano brought to football. Bowles had been the secondary coach for the Dolphins this season, a team that was 4-9, and last in the AFC East. Bowles has no prior head coaching experience.