The best hockey coach meltdowns come when the head coaches, assistant coaches or general managers of teams in the NHL, AHL, ECHL and other top hockey leagues lose their temper (and sometimes their clothes). Once they snap all hell breaks loose and everything from sticks to benches rain down on the ice.
Usually when hockey coaches flip out it's because they disagree with the referee for one reason or another. Most times, coaches will just blow it off but every so often a call gets under their skin and they lose it. The tantrum usually starts with cursing then can escalate to the coach throwing objects on the ice. Whatever is within arm's reach is fair game like hockey sticks, water bottles, clipboards and in the case of former New Jersey Devils coach Robbie Ftorek, an entire wooden bench often ends up on the playing surface.
Some coaches however take flipping out to another level completely. Former Los Angeles Kings coach Tom Webster did just that when he hurled a hockey stick at former NHL referee Kerry Fraser in a fit of rage. Webster later earned a 12-game suspension. Russian hockey coach Andrey Nazarov earned an indefinite ban after getting into a physical altercation with fans behind the bench.
Greg Pankewicz however takes the cake for originality of a hockey coach meltdown. As the assistant coach of the Colorado Eagles, then a member of the Central Hockey League, Pankewicz went bananas behind the bench during a February 2011 game. In addition to cursing at the officials and tossing various objects onto the ice, Pankewicz went as far as to stand up on the bench and begin stripping. As he stood on the bench topless with everything from his tie to his shoes on the ice, Pankewicz was finally ejected.
For as long as there is hockey coaches and hockey referees, there will certainly always be hockey meltdowns just like these ones. It might not be the best marketing tool but it sure gets the fans talking. Who said hockey was boring?What is the best hockey coach meltdown? Take a look at this list and see for yourself.
Coach of the Vityaz Chekhov of the Kontinental Hockey League (November 6, 2011)
Dave_7672 added Patrick Roy
Coach of the Abbotsford Heat in the American Hockey League (March 27, 2010)