General manager Kyle Dubas took a break from the Mitch Marner contract talks to round the Toronto Maple Leafs’ bench staff on Saturday.
Former Philadelphia Flyers bench boss Dave Hakstol, 50, will work under Leafs head coach Mike Babcock.
“I look forward to building relationships with the players and getting to work with the entire group.”
Former Philadelphia GM Ron Hextall hired Hakstol in May 2015, a coach with no NHL experience from Drayton Valley, Alta., out of the University of North Dakota and watched him guide the Flyers to a 42-26-14 mark last season and two playoff appearances in three years that were followed by first-round exits.
2-time WCHA coach of the year
At North Dakota, Hakstol compiled a mark of 289-143-43 and guided the Fighting Hawks to four Western Collegiate Hockey Association championships and seven Frozen Four appearances.
Last month, the Maple Leafs added one-time Florida Panthers assistant coach Paul McFarland of Richmond Hill, Ont., for the same role.
The 33-year-old spent three seasons as head coach of the Ontario Hockey League’s Kingston Frontenacs (2014-17), amassing a 111-71-22 record.
Also Saturday, Toronto announced the signing of goalie Michael Hutchinson and defenceman Martin Marincin to one-year contracts worth $700,000 US.
The Barrie, Ont., native is 95-46-43 with a 2.70 GAA and .908 save percentage in 111 NHL regular-season contests for Winnipeg, Florida and the Maple Leafs.
Marincin, a 27-year-old depth defenceman, had a goal and five points in 24 games with the Maple Leafs this past season.
On Friday, the Maple Leafs signed pending restricted free-agent wingers Kasperi Kapanen and Andreas Johnsson to contract extensions.
Fellow RFA Marner, who led the team with 94 points this past season, remains unsigned with NHL free agency set to open Monday at 12 p.m. ET.