Boston University coach David Quinn has informed school officials that he intends to leave for the vacant New York Rangers head-coaching position, sources have told ESPN’s John Buccigross.
Quinn, 51, would replace Alain Vigneault, who was fired after amassing a 226-147-37 record over five seasons.
Quinn and the Rangers, according to multiple reports, have discussed a five-year contract worth approximately $2.5 million annually, but a source with knowledge of the negotiations told ESPN that a deal isn’t done.
Rangers general manager Jeff Gorton is in Denmark until Monday for the IIHF World Championships. It’s expected details will be ironed out with Quinn when Gorton returns.
Quinn replaced the legendary Jack Parker at BU in 2013 and led the Terriers to three NCAA regional finals in five seasons and were runners-up for the national title in 2015. He has a record of 105-67-21 at BU.
He was previously the head coach of the AHL Lake Erie Monsters for three seasons (2009-12) and served as an assistant coach with the Colorado Avalanche for one season before joining BU.
After firing Vigneault, Gorton said the Rangers were ready for an outside-the-box option.
“We’re going to look for highly qualified individuals,” Gorton said then. “Where that person comes from, we’ll look anywhere — wherever we can find the best coach going forward.”
The Rangers made waves during the regular season by declaring on Feb. 8 that they would begin “losing familiar faces” through trades in an attempt to build a roster of “young, competitive players.” At the time, New York was only three points out of the last wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference.
Quinn is a natural fit for the Rangers, who have more than a dozen players with NCAA backgrounds, including defenseman and BU alum Kevin Shattenkirk. Assistant general manager Chris Drury is also a BU product.
Quinn is considered to be a players’ coach and is willing to give younger players the leeway to make mistakes and grow from them.
Gorton said last month that he would put a premium on finding a fresh perspective on the roster, desiring someone who could work with inexperienced players during the team’s rebuild.
“I think fresh is a good word,” Gorton said. “We’re looking for someone that has ideas on how to move forward with a young group.”
If and when a deal is finalized, Quinn would join a growing trend of NCAA coaches making the leap to the NHL. Dave Hakstol was hired out of North Dakota by the Philadelphia Flyers in 2015, and University of Denver coach Jim Montgomery was hired by the Dallas Stars earlier this month.