WINNIPEG -- Could the Winnipeg Jets be turning to Mike Keane to round out their coaching staff?
With news that Ray Edwards has declined the opportunity to be an assistant under Claude Noel, there’s still at least one opening on the staff and multiple sources told The Sun on Wednesday that Keane is interested in getting behind the bench for his hometown team.
Prior to having his jersey retired by the Manitoba Moose in February, Keane hinted he was open to getting into coaching should the right opportunity arise and former Montreal Canadiens bench boss Jacques Demers believes Keane would be a natural.
Following a solid NHL career that spanned 1,161 regular season games and another 220 in the playoffs, Keane spent his final five seasons as captain of the Moose.
Edwards confirmed in an e-mail on Wednesday that he’s staying in his role as head coach of the Portland Pirates, the primary affiliate of the Phoenix Coyotes.
Charlie Huddy has agreed to join Noel’s staff, though an official announcement has yet to be made by the Jets.
An NHL source confirmed on Wednesday night that former Moose goalie Wade Flaherty will also join the coaching staff, likely as goalie coach.
Flaherty, who played 20 professional seasons (including 11 in the NHL and three with the Moose), spent the past three seasons as developmental goalie coach of the Chicago Blackhawks.
Flaherty also backstopped Noel’s Milwaukee Admirals to the Calder Cup in 2004.
VENUE CHANGE: The Jets pre-season game against the Ottawa Senators on Sept. 26 that was originally slated for Conception Bay South has been moved to Mile One Centre in St. John’s, Nfld.
The game is part of the Kraft Hockeyville celebrations and moving the game to the larger arena will allow more people to get a chance to take in the game and allow the $100,000 prize to be used to upgrade the Robert French Memorial Stadium — rather than just using the cash to get the facility up to NHL standards for the game.
The Jets will play seven pre-season games during their first season back in the NHL.
ANNOUNCEMENT SET?: Speaking of St. John’s, a source suggested the Jets are finally ready to formally announce Keith McCambridge as the head coach of their AHL affiliate on Thursday in Newfoundland.
McCambridge, who was born in Thompson but grew up in Winnipeg, spent the past two seasons as an assistant coach with the Manitoba Moose.
The 37-year-old former defenceman also has two seasons of head coaching experience with the Alaska Aces of the ECHL, posting 86 victories and reaching the Kelly Cup final in 2009.
MURRAY SIGNS: Free agent forward Andrew Murray of Selkirk signed a one-year, two-way deal with the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Murray, 29, was limited to 29 games last season because of injury and had four goals and eight points.