Newell Brown In, Ryan Walter Out

They grow in corn fields now? [www.hhof.com]

Some behind the bench tinkering this afternoon. Rick Bowness has re-signed as an associate coach; no shock there. Darryl Williams has re-signed as well.

But Vancouver has finally confirmed that ex-Anaheim assistant coach Newell Brown will be replacing an outgoing Ryan Walter. Here's a few reasons why you should care:

1. Newell Brown was Vancouver’s sixth pick, 158th overall, in the 1982 NHL Entry Draft, though he never suited up.

2. Unlike Walter, Brown comes with a truck load of coaching experience, notably:

Before joining the NHL ranks, Brown spent four seasons in the Detroit Red Wings organization as head coach of the Adirondack Red Wings, Detroit’s AHL affiliate. He posted a 151-134-35 record in 320 games from 1992-93 to 1995-96 and led the team to an appearance in the Calder Cup Playoffs each season.

Brown also served as head coach of Michigan Tech University from 1990-92 and was an assistant at his alma mater, Michigan State University, from 1986-90. He helped the Spartans win back-to-back regular season and tournament titles in 1988-89 and 1989-90. The team also advanced to four consecutive NCAA tournaments, finishing second in 1987 and third in 1989.

3. Via Anaheim Calling, he leaves the Ducks after helping them to four playoff finishes and a Stanley Cup before missing the postseason in 2010. Better still, one of his calling cards with the franchise was constructing the third best NHL power play in the last 20 years.

4. He seems like a genuinely good guy who has a true passion for the game. Can we speculate now or later he's being groomed as Vigneault's replacement? Naaa...we'll wait.

5. Ryan Walter can go feed the hungry spirit elsewhere. There's nothing to suggest he's a bad coach, but his quiet removal suggests he wasn't getting the job done. It also ends the "Vancouver needs a motivational speaker as a coach" line of humor.

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