Lightning organization has two All-Star coaches

Jon Cooper will coach the NHL's Atlantic Division and Ben Groulx will coach the AHL's North in the leagues' All-Star games.
Tampa Bay Lightning head coach Jon Cooper, seen addressing the media Nov. 7, 2018, was named Atlantic Division coach for the NHL All-Star Game. [DIRK SHADD   |   Times]
Tampa Bay Lightning head coach Jon Cooper, seen addressing the media Nov. 7, 2018, was named Atlantic Division coach for the NHL All-Star Game. [DIRK SHADD | Times]
Published January 5
Updated January 5

The Lightning organization has two All-Star coaches this year.

Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper was named the Atlantic Division coach for the NHL All-Star Game on Saturday. Syracuse coach Ben Groulx previously was named the North Division coach for the AHL All-Star Classic.

For the NHL game Jan. 26 in San Jose, each of the four division teams in the event's 3-on-3 tournament will be led by the coach whose team leads its division in points percentage at the season's halfway point. With six of the eight Atlantic teams having reached that point Saturday, Tampa Bay's .805, from a 32-7-2 record entering the day, led and couldn't be bettered.

The other NHL All-Star coaches are the Capitals' Todd Reirden (.650) in the Metropolitan, the Jets' Paul Maurice (.650) in the Central and the Flames' Bill Peters (.643) in the Pacific.

Let's look at how crazy the Lightning's points percentage is. The last time a team finished the season at .802 or better was the Blackhawks in 2012-13 at .802. The past five Presidents' Trophy winners have not topped .735.

Back to the topic at hand. Groulx will coach the AHL's North Division due to Syracuse being atop the division at the predetermined deadline of Dec. 31. The Crunch were 20-8-2 with a points percentage of .700 (which would be second in the NHL).

Groulx will coach in the Jan. 27-28 AHL All-Star Classic due to Syracuse being atop its division at the predetermined deadline of Dec. 31.

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