ST PAUL, Minn. — After a promising debut that was cut short while his team was on a roll, Dean Evason can exhale and settle in a bit after being named the permanent head coach of the Minnesota Wild.
Wild General Manager Bill Guerin made the announcement Monday, removing the "interim" from Evason's title, and announced that the long-time NHL assistant has signed a two-year deal with the club.
"I am very excited to announce that Dean Evason is our full-time head coach," said Guerin. "Dean has done a fantastic job as our interim head coach and deserves this opportunity. I look forward to watching our team under his leadership going forward."
Evason arguably had the Wild playing its best hockey of the 2019-20 season when the NHL halted play due to the coronavirus. He led the team to an 8-4 record after taking over in the wake of Bruce Boudreau's dismissal. Prior to his promotion Evason served as a head coach for several teams in hockey's minor leagues, and as an assistant for the Wild and Washington Capitals.
The Wild's new permanent head coach also carved out a 13-year career as an NHL player, including stints with the Capitals, Hartford Whalers, San Jose Sharks, Dallas Stars and Calgary Flames.
Evason's promotion coincides with the start of Wild training camp Monday, as the club begins preparations for its playoff series with the Vancouver Canucks, which begins Aug. 2 in Edmonton.