SUNRISE, Fla. — Joel Quenneville resigned as coach of the Florida Panthers on Thursday, two days after the second-winningest coach in NHL history was among those implicated for not swiftly responding to allegations by a Chicago Blackhawks player in 2010 of being sexually assaulted by another coach.

The announcement was made shortly after Quenneville met with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman in New York to discuss his role in what happened in Chicago during the 2010 Stanley Cup playoffs, when a player named Kyle Beach said he was sexually assaulted by then-Blackhawks assistant Brad Aldrich.

“Joel made the decision to resign and the Florida Panthers accepted that resignation,” Panthers President Matthew Caldwell said.

Andrew Brunette — an assistant coach under Quenneville — was hired as the team’s interim coach, and is expected to make his debut when the unbeaten Panthers play at Detroit on Friday night. Brunette has never been a head coach.

Quenneville resigned with about three years and $15 million remaining on his contract with the Panthers.

An investigation released Tuesday said Quenneville — who coached Chicago at that time — and others in the Blackhawks organization did not prioritize addressing Beach’s allegations, presumably because they did not want to take away from the team’s push toward a championship.

Quenneville has said he was unaware of the allegations until this summer, a stance he reiterated as recently as Wednesday morning. Beach, in an interview that aired Wednesday evening on TSN, said there was “absolutely no way” the then-Blackhawks coach could deny knowing about the allegations.

At 7-0-0, the Panthers are off to their best start in the franchise’s 28-year history, looking very much like the Stanley Cup contender that Quenneville was hired in 2019 to build.

If they get there, it’ll be without him now. Players on Wednesday insisted their focus was solely on the ice; some of the team’s leaders like captain Aleksander Barkov and defenseman Aaron Ekblad even said they did not know much about the investigation or the massive fallout from Tuesday’s report.

“It should go without saying that the conduct described in that report is troubling and inexcusable,” Caldwell said. “It stands in direct contrast to our values as an organization and what the Florida Panthers stand for. No one should ever have to endure what Kyle Beach experienced during, and long after, his time in Chicago.

“Quite simply, he was failed,” Caldwell added. “We praise his bravery and courage in coming forward.”

Quenneville is the second-winningest coach in NHL history, his 969 victories after Wednesday trailing only the 1,244 amassed by Scotty Bowman — the father of now-former Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman, who resigned Tuesday when the investigation’s findings were released. Stan Bowman, like Quenneville, was among the central figures identified as having not acted properly and swiftly to Beach’s allegations.

The investigation determined that Quenneville was part of a meeting about Beach’s claims on May 23, 2010, the same day Chicago won the Western Conference title and moved into the Stanley Cup final. Chicago won the Cup that season, the first of three titles the Blackhawks won under Quenneville.

CAPITALS: Washington Capitals winger T.J. Oshie has been listed as week-to-week with a lower-body injury.

Oshie took a shot from Detroit’s Danny DeKeyser off the outside of his right foot during the third period of the Red Wings’ 3-2 overtime win Wednesday night. He limped to the bench, but did not miss any shifts and finished the game.

Oshie did not take part in an optional practice Thursday.

WILD: Minnesota forwards Mats Zuccarello and Rem Pitlick have entered the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol.

Zuccarello is Minnesota’s leading scorer, with seven points, including three goals, through six games. Pitlick had an assist in his debut with the Wild on Tuesday, a 3-2 victory at Vancouver.

The Wild recalled forwards Connor Dewar and Kyle Rau and defenseman Jon Lizotte from their AHL affiliate in Iowa for reinforcements ahead of their game at Seattle on Thursday.

The Wild abruptly canceled their practice on Wednesday while they sorted out the situation. They already had three assistant coaches who were in the league coronavirus protocol. Wild General Manager Bill Guerin said before the season that the team was 100% vaccinated.

THURSDAY’S GAME

FLAMES 4, PENGUINS 0: Jacob Markstrom stopped 45 shots for his second shutout in his last three starts, and Calgary won in Pittsburgh.

Markstrom recorded his second shutout in five games this season and the 10th of his career. Playing his 12th NHL season and second with the Flames, Markstrom has stopped 136 of his last 137 shots.

Johnny Gaudreau scored his first goal in the opening period, and Blake Coleman, Dillon Dube and Milan Lucic scored in the third as Calgary swept a five-game trip. The Flames never trailed during the trip, leading for 234:05 overall, and outscored the opposition 21-7 on the trip.

Casey DeSmith, who made his first start since Oct. 14, stopped 31 shots for Pittsburgh. The Penguins have lost two straight after starting the season with points in their first five games.

Coleman gave Calgary a 2-0 lead just 1:04 into the third period when his point shot through a crowd beat DeSmith. Mikael Backlund recorded an assist for his 400th NHL point.


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