Paul Maurice got emotional after returning to Winnipeg.

Paul Maurice got emotional after returning to Winnipeg.

Paul Maurice, former head coach of the Winnipeg Jets, was anticipating a profound return to Winnipeg when he welcomed on Tuesday to his Florida Panthers to town. Interestingly Jets beat the Panthers in that match, and Paul Maurice received a warm welcome from Winnipeg, including a standing ovation.

The former Winnipeg’s head coach knew that the moment while being presented before the game at Canada Life Center would be stirring.

Paul Maurice appeared composed as he surveyed the audience and began the first official question-and-answer session at Canada Life Centre since he made the tragic choice to resign as the Winnipeg Jets’ head coach just over a year ago.

Since he succeeded Claude Noel on an interim basis in January 2014, Maurice’s term has lasted about eight years. Maurice has always been at ease speaking in front of a microphone.

Although a few stuck out, the focus of this session wasn’t soundbites.

More so, it was out of nostalgia for the time spent at a location that impacted Maurice and his entire family.

It also involved owning up to a mistake.

Last December, Maurice acknowledged the head training position with the Florida Panthers in June after an unexpected takeoff from the Jets.

Maurice achieved a 315-229-62 record during his period in Winnipeg. In 2018, he drove the group to its most memorable first playoff series triumph in Jet’s franchise history, getting defeated by Vegas Golden Knights in the final of the Western Conference.

Source: Twitter

He also holds Jet’s franchise record for most game wins (315) and coaching for the max games(600).

His daughter Sydney, who has stayed in Winnipeg, was one of those persons he had intended to see while in town.

Even though he abruptly left, Maurice still cares deeply for the Jets.

Maurice claimed that the COVID-19 lockdown was the catalyst for his decision to resign a year prior since he had lost interest in the position. He wishes he had stepped aside sooner.

The Jets recruited former Dallas Stars coach Rick Bowness to take over as head coach this season after Dave Lowry concluded the year in that capacity.

Before Tuesday’s game, Bowness had the Jets off to a 15-7-1 start, while Maurice had the Panthers at 12-9-4.

Mark Scheifele stated about Paul Maurice, the motivation of players on Tuesday’s match, ” I’m not going to lie, that was a good win in my books. I’m pretty happy with that one. At the end of the day, we’ve moved on. We’re a different team this year than we were last year.”

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