Just because you know all along something is bound to happen, it always sucks a little more when it becomes official.
Kevin Constantine's contract will not be renewed, and he has coached his last game for the Aeros.
While I understand all the reasons as to why he was dismissed, one thing we'll never know, for sure, is if there was anything KC could have done to keep his job in Houston.
I think his fate was sealed last summer. Money is probably the only reason (not having to pay two coaches (the fired one and the new one)) that he got another year.
I talked to Kevin this afternoon, and he told me that he is going to do some speaking engagements for USA Hockey in the immediate future. After that, I am sure he and his agent will be talking about what jobs are available. More and more of those will surface in the coming weeks and after teams are eliminated from their playoffs.
He said he was treated fairly by the Wild and that the conversation was cordial and to the point. He said the team just wanted to go in a different direction, and that was that.
Now, as to who will replace KC, that remains to be seen. There are some reports that Claude Noel could be in the mix, and there are a few other coaches with connections to Chuck Fletcher that will get a look. Troy Ward, according to Russo, is a candidate. John Anderson, who coached the Wolves to championships time and time again, also just got fired by the Atlanta Thrashers.
We've said it before, and we'll say it again. This is going to be an interesting summer.