The Calgary Flames announced it is investigating head coach Bill Peters due to the alleged use of racial slurs when he was the coach of the Chicago Blackhawks AHL affiliate, the Rockford Ice Hogs. Sportnet’s Jeff Marek among other sources have reported it will result in termination.
Flames Fire Coach Bill Peters
The Flames have parted ways with Bill Peters. This season, the team has a record of 11 wins, 12 losses, and four overtime losses. Calgary sits in the sixth spot in the Pacific Division.
Over his six-year NHL coaching career, Peters has split his time between Carolina Hurricanes and the Flames. Overall he has 198 wins, 175 losses and 64 overtime losses. His greatest success was with Calgary in the 2018-19 season when the Flames won the Pacific Division title. However, the Flames were bounced in the first round by the Colorado Avalanche.
In Peters’ absence at Tuesday’s morning practice, the team’s assistant general manager Craig Conroy took the ice. Reports note that he and Geoff Ward, the Flames assistant coach, ran practice.
What This Means for the Team’s Future
Calgary was one of the favourites to make a run in the Western Conference. However, it has gotten off to a slow start. The Flames have gone long periods without scoring goals and that’s hurt them so far.
However, the main crux of the firing is after former player Akim Aliu revealed in a series of tweets that Peters allegedly used racist language on the Nigerian-born player. The NHL called the alleged behaviour “repugnant and unacceptable” and said it would thoroughly look into the matter.
The Flames were playing the Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday night when Aliu tweeted the accusations. Treliving said “I would say we take these matters very, very seriously,” when he talked to the media after the game.
The allegations come in the wake of Mike Babcock’s treatment of Mitch Marner during his rookie season with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Babcock was Peters’ college coach and was on his staff with the Detroit Red Wings from 2011-14.
DENVER, CO – APRIL 15: Calgary Flames Head Coach Bill Peters during a Western Conference match-up in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs on April 15, 2019 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, CO. (Photo by Russell Lansford/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)