Columbus Blue Jackets General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen spoke plainly at the end of the Blue Jackets’ playoff run, stating that he was happy with Head Coach Todd Richards and his coaching staff. Today he put those words into action when the club extended the contracts of associate coach Craig Hartsburg, goaltending coach Ian Clark, and development coach Chris Clark into multi-year deals.
Hartsburg started his career in the NHL as a defenseman, playing for the Minnesota North Stars from 1979-89 and totalling 98 goals and 315 assists for 413 points. He has served as an assistant coach for Minnesota and Philadelphia in the NHL, and twice won the OHL’s Coach of the Year award, first with Guelph and then with Sault Ste. Marie.
Ian Clark came to Columbus via Vancouver, where he was goalie coach for eight years. His international resume also includes a spot on Team Canada’s coaching staff at the IIHF World Junior Championships, from 2003-2006.
Chris Clark has served on the Columbus staff since his retirement in 2011-2013. He played in 607 games with Columbus, Washington and Calgary over his 14-year career, amassing 700 penalty minutes. He also won a Calder Cup as a member of the AHL’s Saint John Flames in 2000-01.
The Blue Jackets also added former Springfield Falcons Head Coach Brad Larsen to a multi-year contract as the Blue Jackets’ assistant coach under Todd Richards.
Jarmo called Larsen a “very bright young coach,” in a statement released today. Before coaching, Larsen spent 13 seasons as a professional player, playing in 294 NHL games with the Colorado Avalanche and Atlanta Thrashers. Under his leadership, the Springfield Falcons posted the first 100-point campaign in franchise history.
He will be replaced as Head Coach in Springfield by Jared Bednar, who previously served as the team’s assistant coach under Larsen.