After hiring one assistant with no NHL coaching experience, Capitals general manager George McPhee was looking to provide first-year head coach Adam Oates with some valuable experience behind an NHL bench.
That may be the biggest reason Tim Hunter is returning to Washington as the Caps' newest assistant coach, joining a staff that includes Calle Johansson.
Hunter, 51, has coached 1,041 games in an assistant role during his 13-season NHL coaching career, including the magical 1998 season in which he helped lead Oates, Johansson and the Capitals to the Stanley Cup Final. He is no relation to former Capitals head coach Dale Hunter.
A former Stanley Cup winner as a player in Calgary in 1989, Hunter was an assistant coach under Ron Wilson in all 13 previous seasons, including five years behind the Washington bench from 1997-2002.
In his five seasons behind the Washington bench, the Capitals compiled a record of 192-159-51-8 .540 percentage.
The Calgary, Alberta, native has a career coaching record of 499-394-70-84 with Washington, San Jose 2002-2008 and Toronto 2008-2011.
As a player Hunter played 16 seasons 1981-1997 in the NHL for Calgary, Quebec, Vancouver and San Jose. He won a Stanley Cup in 1989 when he was a member of the Calgary Flames.
In 815 career NHL games the 6-fot-2, 200-pound right wing tallied 138 points 62 goals, 76 assists along with 3,146 penalty minutes. He ranks eighth in all-time career NHL penalty minutes and still holds the Flames all-time franchise record with 2,405 minutes in penalties. He was originally selected by the Atlanta Flames in the third round (54th overall) of the 1979 NHL Entry Draft.