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Flames hire Hartley as new head coach

Calgary, AB (Sports Network) - Bob Hartley was named the new head coach of the Calgary Flames on Thursday.

Hartley was rumored to be a favorite to land the head coaching job with the Montreal Canadiens after Randy Cunneyworth's short tenure behind the bench.

Instead, Hartley joins the Flames following a championship season with the ZSC Lions of Switzerland's National League A.

"Bob Hartley is a winner! Bob has won at every level he has coached, from the QMJHL to the AHL to the NHL to Switzerland, and we are confident he is going to continue his winning ways in Calgary," said Flames general manager Jay Feaster. "He is a tireless worker, an outstanding motivator, a great bench boss and game strategist; and a teacher at heart. Moreover, he is a great person as well. We look forward to Bob and his wife Micheline joining the Flames family, and to Bob taking our hockey club to the next level."

A native of Hawkesbury, Ontario, Hartley has coached in 651 career NHL games with the Colorado Avalanche (1998-2002) and Atlanta Thrashers (2003-2007).

Hartley compiled a 193-109-48 regular season record and a 49-31 playoff record during his time in Colorado, which included a Stanley Cup title in 2001. His 193 wins are a franchise record.

Hartley guided the Thrashers to their first Southeast Division title during the 2006-07 campaign. But a slow start for the Thrashers in 2007-08 resulted in Hartley and the club parting ways.

"First I would like to thank Jay Feaster and the Calgary Flames for having the confidence to provide me with the opportunity to coach again in the NHL," said Hartley. "I would also like to express my appreciation to the ZSC Lions for the tremendous experience of coaching and living in Switzerland; and also complying with my wishes to depart their organization for the Calgary Flames."

The Flames went 37-29-16 last season and missed the playoffs for the third consecutive season. In April, Calgary decided to part ways with Brent Sutter.

05/31 19:13:44 ET