Alain Vigneault was named the 21st head coach in Flyers history on April 15, 2019.
Vigneault, 58, brings 1,216 games of experience as an NHL head coach to Philadelphia over parts of 16 seasons. He served as the head coach of the New York Rangers for five seasons (2013-18), the Vancouver Canucks for seven seasons (2006-13) and the Montreal Canadiens for parts of four seasons (1997-2000). He also served as the head coach for Team Canada at the 2019 IIHF World Championships in Slovakia, guiding the squad to a silver medal.
In Vigneault’s 15 full seasons as a head coach, eight of his teams have finished with 100 points or better. A ninth team, Vancouver in 2012-13, achieved 59 points during the lockout-shortened campaign for a points percentage of .610, equivalent to a 100-point season. His teams have won seven division championships and have made the playoffs 11 times, advancing past the first round on eight of those occasions, and reaching the Stanley Cup Final with Vancouver in 2010-11 and the Rangers in 2013-14. Three of Vigneault’s teams have earned the Presidents’ Trophy – Vancouver on two occasions, 2010-11 and 2011-12, and the Rangers in 2014-15. Individually, Vigneault won the Jack Adams Award as the NHL Coach of the Year in 2006-07 and was a finalist for the award on three other occasions, in 1997-98, 2010-11 and 2014-15.
Vigneault earned 539 wins over his 12 seasons in Vancouver and New York from 2006-18, which was the most of any NHL coach in that timeframe – five more than Joel Quenneville and nine ahead of Barry Trotz. He is also one of only two head coaches, along with Scotty Bowman, who have captured the Presidents' Trophy at least three times since the award was first presented in 1985-86.
Vigneault was one of the most successful head coaches in the 91 seasons the New York Rangers franchise had played through the end of the 2017-18 campaign, joining Lester Patrick and Emile Francis in a group that sits atop the 35 men that have coached the team. He was just the fourth head coach to start five consecutive seasons with the Rangers, and he finished ranked third in the franchise’s history in regular season wins with 226, third in playoff wins with 31, and fourth in regular season games coached with 410. The 226 wins in his five years with the club is the highest number of wins over any five-year span in Rangers history.
Vigneault guided the Blueshirts to the playoffs in each of his first four seasons with the team, joining Patrick and Francis as the only three head coaches in Rangers history to reach the playoffs in at least four consecutive seasons. Those four teams all turned in seasons of 96 points or better, starting with the 2013-14 squad that bested the Flyers in a seven-game first-round series en route to the 2014 Stanley Cup Final. The Rangers followed that season up by winning the Presidents’ Trophy in 2014-15 with 53 wins and 113 points, both franchise records, and took the Tampa Bay Lightning to a seventh game in the Eastern Conference Final. Playoff appearances also followed seasons of 101 points in 2015-16 and 102 points in 2016-17.
Vigneault’s tenure in Vancouver was the most successful period in the franchise’s history. He is the team’s all-time leader in nearly all major coaching categories, including regular season games coached (540), wins (313), points (683) and points percentage (.632), as well as playoff games coached (68) and wins (33).
In Vigneault’s debut season with Vancouver in 2006-07, the team went 49-26-7 for 105 points to win the Pacific Division after finishing fourth with 92 points a year prior, a turnaround that earned Vigneault the Jack Adams Award on his second career nomination. After missing out on a playoff spot by three points in 2008-09, Vigneault and the Canucks reeled off five consecutive division championships, all of which came with seasons of 100 points or equivalent.
The peak of that run came in 2010-11, when Vancouver went 54-19-9 for 117 points to win its first of two consecutive Presidents’ Trophies. The Canucks defeated the defending champion Blackhawks in a seven-game first round series, and after defeating Nashville in the second round and San Jose in the Conference Final, came within one win of the Stanley Cup before falling to Boston in a seven-game Final series. A 51-win season followed in 2011-12, but the Canucks saw their run cut short by the eventual Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings in the first round.
Vigneault’s first NHL head coaching position came in Montreal, where he became the second-youngest head coach in the franchise’s long history at the age of 36. Vigneault guided the Canadiens to the Eastern Conference Semifinals in 1997-98 and earned his first Jack Adams nomination in 1999-2000 after Montreal came within two points of a playoff spot despite an injury-riddled season in which 36 different skaters appeared in at least one game; only seven of those 36 players played 70 or more games that year.
Over the course of a three-year playing career as a defenseman, Vigneault appeared in 42 NHL games with St. Louis from 1981-1983 after being selected by the Blues in the eighth round (167th overall) of the 1981 NHL Entry Draft. He began his coaching career in 1986 in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, spending one season with the Trois-Rivieres Draveurs and five with the Hull Olympiques. In 1992-93, Vigneault joined the expansion Ottawa Senators as an assistant coach, where he spent 3 ½ seasons before returning to the QMJHL, where he coached the Beauport Harfangs through the end of the 1996-97 season. He was named the head coach of the Canadiens the following season.
After departing Montreal 20 games into the 2000-01 season, Vigneault spent two seasons back in the QMJHL as the head coach of the Prince Edward Island Rocket from 2003-05 and then one season as the head coach of the Manitoba Moose, the AHL affiliate of the Canucks, before his return to the NHL with Vancouver.
A native of Quebec City, Quebec, Vigneault has two daughters, Andreane and Janie. He was born on May 14, 1961.