May 27, 2013

Maine hires Yale assistant Gendron as new head coach

By Andrew Merritt

Dennis "Red" Gendron, far right, celebrates Yale's national championship with the rest of the Bulldogs' coaching staff. Gendron has been named the new head coach at Maine, taking over for Tim Whitehead. (Dave Arnold Photography)

Maine has finally found its man.

Dennis “Red” Gendron (Boston), a two-time national champion and a Stanley Cup winner, was named the new Maine men’s coach on Monday. His hiring will be formally announced during a press conference on Tuesday at Maine’s Alfond Arena.

Gendron, 55, replaces Tim Whitehead, whose contract Maine bought out after 12 years and two national championship appearances. Gendron inherits a Black Bear team that went 11-19-8 last year, but put together an impressive 6-3-4 finish to edge into the Hockey East playoffs, before falling to eventual league champion UMass-Lowell.

Gendron is fresh off winning a national championship with Yale, where was an assistant coach under coach Keith Allain (Worcester, Mass.) for two years. Before that, he was an assistant under Toot Cahoon (Lynn, Mass.) at UMass from 2005-11, helping the Minutemen reach the NCAA tournament in 2007.

Gendron already has some history with Maine, having been an assistant coach from 1991-94, including the 1993 national championship team. He earned a master’s degree in education from the university during that time.

He then moved on to the New Jersey Devils, working as an assistant from 1994-96. He won a Stanley Cup with the team in 1995, then became an assistant with the Devils’ AHL affiliate in Albany. He spent two years as a scout for the Devils, and from 2002-04 was the head coach in Albany, before returning to the college game. He was a part of the Devils organization for three Stanley Cup titles (1995, 2000, 2003), and his name is inscribed on the Cup twice (1995, 2000).

Gendron, a 1979 graduate of New England College, is also the author of a book, “Coaching Hockey Successfully,” which USA Hockey uses in its coaching education program, according to a Maine press release.

Twitter: @A_Merritt