Florida Panthers head coach Joel Quenneville is under hot water.
Over the Summer, an investigation was launched into a potential organizational cover up from the Blackhawks about an alleged sexual assault from video coach Brad Aldrich in 2010. When asked, Quenneville (who was the coach at the time) said he was not made aware of the accusations until earlier this year.
“I first learned of these allegations through the media earlier this summer,” Quenneville said in July. “I have contacted the Blackhawks organization to let them know I will support and participate in the independent review. Out of respect for all those involved, I won’t comment further while this matter is before the courts.”
But contradicting results emerged about Joel Quenneville from the independent investigation by the Blackhawks that recently concluded.
According to the findings, Joel Quenneville was one of several members of the Blackhawks’ brass who attended meetings to discuss the allegations made against Brad Aldrich.
Schar says Blackhawks officials held a May 23, 2010, meeting to discuss the allegations of sexual assault. Those present included John McDonough, Stan Bowman, Joel Quenneville, Jay Blunk and Kevin Cheveldayoff, Schar said.
— Rick Westhead (@rwesthead) October 26, 2021
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The Blackhawks fired everyone who was in the team’s front office at the time. But now, Joel Quenneville is the head coach of the Florida Panthers, and Kevin Cheveldayoff is the GM of the Winnipeg Jets. So what does Tuesday’s reveal mean for them?
The Blackhawks have turned over the results of the investigation to NHL commissioner Gary Bettman – who has made his intentions known that he plans to meet with both Quenneville and Cheveldayoff before making any determination.
#FlaPanthers statement: “Commissioner Gary Bettman has indicated that he will be meeting with Joel Quenneville to discuss the events highlighted in the Jenner & Block October 2021 report. Accordingly, we have no comment.”
— Erin Brown (@rinkside) October 26, 2021
It feels likely that Joel Quenneville will be forced to step down as the head coach of the Panthers after being seemingly caught red-handed in a lie. But for now, Florida seems intent on letting Bettman make the call.
During his time in Chicago, Quenneville won three Stanley Cup championships, and remains one of the most celebrated coaches in the city’s history.