Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports)
Gerard Gallant, the new New York Rangers head coach, officially completed his coaching staff on Tuesday as general manager Chris Drury announced the squad has recruited Gord Murphy, Mike Kelly and Jim Midgley as assistant coaches.
Murphy has a lot of experience working behind the Rangers bench and with the organization. He served as the team’s assistant coach in the 2020 Stanley Cup playoff qualifying round in the Toronto bubble, in which the team was swept in three games by the Carolina Hurricanes. Last year, he replaced Lindy Ruff as senior assistant under former head coach David Quinn, being recalled from his role as associate head coach of Rangers AHL affiliate, the Hartford Wolf Pack. .
Previously, he was assistant to the Columbus Blue Jackets – where he worked alongside Gallant from 2002 to 2007 – of the Florida Panthers and the Philadelphia Flyers.
Murphy’s first full season with the Rangers coaching staff, having previously worked with the Rangers coaching staff during his tenure with the organization. Murphy served as the Blueshirts’ assistant coach in the 2020 playoff qualifying round, and he also assisted the Rangers coaching staff for several games in March 2021.
Kelly has also worked with Gallant as an assistant with the Florida Panthers (2014-17), Vegas Golden Knights (2017-2020) and with Team Canada at the 2021 IIHF World Championships, during which they won the gold medal.
Midgley is back behind the bench after spending the 2020-21 season as an amateur scout with the Flyers. He coached for nearly a decade in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL), including a year as head coach of the Halifax Mooseheads in 2017-18.
The Rangers also announced that three-time Stanley Cup-winning defenseman Steve Smith has been named an assistant coach for the team’s AHL branch in Hartford.