D Carlson hoping Caps promote Reirden to head coach

A day after signing an eight-year, $64 million contract with the Washington Capitals, defenseman John Carlson said he hopes associate coach Todd Reirden will be promoted to replace Barry Trotz as the team’s head coach.”Yeah, I think that would be a lot easier of a transition,” Carlson told reporters at a press conference on Monday. “But that’s not my call to make.”General manager Brian MacLellan said last week he would sit down with Reirden, who turned 47 on Monday, for a formal interview this week. At the moment, there are no other apparent candidates for the job, which became vacant when Trotz resigned last week following an inability to agree on a new contract. Trotz was hired by the New York Islanders on Thursday.Carlson, 28, credited Reirden — who has worked primarily with the team’s defense and power play since being hired in 2014 — with his own development and for the success of the Capitals’ defensemen.”I thought he was crucial for my career,” Carlson said. “And [he] just changed kind of a few things how I looked at the game, changed a few things with the D that I think really benefited everyone on D and made it pretty clear what he expected of us and allowed us to go out there and do the rest.”Carlson added he would expect many of his teammates to support Reirden’s promotion.”Guys have a lot of respect for Todd,” he said. “And if that’s the case, then he’s going to do a great job.”Under the guide of Trotz and Reirden, Carlson led all NHL defensemen in points this past regular season with 68 (15 goals, 53 assists), setting career highs in all three marks while averaging a team-high 24:47 of ice time.He added 20 points (five goals, 15 assists) during the team’s run to the Stanley Cup title, averaging 25:38 of ice time.

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