The New York Rangers will hire Lindy Ruff as an assistant coach to replace fan-favorite and 1994 champion Jeff Beukeboom.
Deal not yet done, but Rangers will hire Lindy Ruff as assistant coach (in charge of defense, plus) to replace Jeff Beukeboom.
— Larry Brooks (@NYP_Brooksie) June 24, 2017
It looks like Alain Vigneault wanted a more experienced coach handling the defenceman on his bench. Jeff Beukeboom had just concluded his first year as Rangers assistant coach with the team after serving in the same capacity with the AHL Hartford Wolfpack, the Rangers farm team for four seasons. GM Gorton has confirmed that Beukeboom is out as an assistant coach but will stay with the organization in an yet to be determined position.
Lindy Ruff was a second round draft pick, 32nd overall, in the 1979 NHL entry draft by the Buffalo Sabres. He made the team out if his first training camp and played in 63 games scoring five goals and 14 assists for 19 points and 38 penalty minutes. Lindy played with Buffalo until the 1988-89 season when he was traded to the New York Rangers. Lindy then played three more seasons with the Rangers here his NHL career concluded in the 1990-91 season. He went on to play the 1991-92 season with the Rochester Americans and concluded his playing career with the San Diego Gulls 1992-93.
Lindy began his coaching career the following season.
Ruff began his coaching career the following season when he was hired as an assistant coach wit the Florida Panthers beginning in 1993-94 season. He remained with the Panthers through the 1996-97 season and then was hired as the Buffalo Sabres head coach to start the 1997-98 season.
This is when Ruff made his mark as an NHL coach. Ruff went on to coach the Sabres for 14 seasons, He compiled a 571 regular season wins. His Sabres made the playoffs in eight of those seasons including the 1998-99 Playoffs that saw the Sabres made it to the Stanley Cup Finals and eventually lost to the Dallas Stars in six games. In February of the 2012-13 season, he was relieved of his coaching duties. This ended his tenure as the NHL’s longest active-serving coach with one team.
Ruff was hired the following season by the Dallas Stars where he went on to coach four more seasons until the end of the 2016-17 when the Dallas Stars announced that he would not return as head coach for the 2017-18 season. Ruff won the Jack Adams Award for Coach of the Year in 2005-06.