Former NHL defenseman Stephane Quintal has been named the league’s Senior Vice President of Player Safety.  Quintal took the reins on an interim basis last April, stepping in for Brendan Shanahan who left to become President of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

“Stephane Quintal has been dedicated to the mission of the Department of Player Safety since its creation for the opening of the 2011-12 season and has demonstrated over the last several months that he is uniquely suited to lead the department going forward. Brendan Shanahan established and built a highly-functioning and well-run department in his three years at its helm. Among his most important decisions was hiring Stephane Quintal to be part of his supervisory team.”

“Tasked with running the department last spring during the most intensely-competitive and closely-scrutinized part of our season – the final regular-season weekend and the entire Stanley Cup Playoffs – Stephane proved that he clearly was up to the challenge. I am confident that he is the right man for the job.”

– NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman

Quintal has been with the Department of Player Safety since its inception in 2011.  Shanahan said of Quintal upon his hire, “Stephane was a physical defenseman who played the game with great passion and intensity. His insight and his ability to articulate our views will be a great asset to our department.”

After stepping into the interim role in the spring, Quintal oversaw numerous play reviews resulting in six player suspensions.

  • April 20, 2014 – Brent Seabrook, CHI – 3 games for an illegal check to the head
  • April 23, 2014 – Matt Cooke, MIN – 7 games for kneeing
  • May 10, 2014 – Brandon Bollig, CHI – 2 games for boarding
  • May 23, 2014 – Brandon Prust, MTL – 2 games for a late hit
  • May 23, 2014 – Dan Carcillo, NYR – 10 games for contact with an official
  • May 27, 2014 – John Moore, NYR – 2 games for an illegal check to the head

Quintal spent 16 years as a National Hockey League defenseman, spending time with the Boston Bruins, St. Louis Blues, Winnipeg Jets, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers and Chicago Blackhawks.  He posted career total of 63 goals, 180 assists, and 1,320 penalty minutes in 1,037 NHL games.  Quintal was Boston’s first-round selection, 14th overall, in the 1987 NHL Entry Draft.

He’s no stranger to mixing things up.  This is apparently a good thing in the NHL front office, as it appears one of the criteria for becoming NHL Head of Player Safety is to have fought Bob Probert.   Shanahan did.   So did Quintal.

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