Kings Sign Murray To Extension

Archived from 2003-04 season.

NHL teams

The Los Angeles Kings rewarded head coach Andy Murray with a multiyear contract extension reportedly worth $800,000 a season.

Murray, 52, has guided the Kings to three NHL playoff appearances and three 90-plus point seasons since being named head coach on June 14, 1999. His record is 171-132-47-21.

"He has a way of keeping players sharp and fresh despite difficult circumstances," General Manager Dave Taylor said. "I think he does a real good job during the games. He can make adjustments during periods and certainly between periods. I think part of the art of coaching is getting your message across to the players. You have to do that under a lot of difficult situations at times. Andy's been able to do that."

Kings are fighting for a playoff spot despite of suffering many injuries. They have lost 434 man-games to injury and are closing in on the Boston Bruins' unofficial league record of 573 man-games lost in 1991-92.

"Dave and I had talked a long time ago," Murray said. "He said, 'Would you like to stay, because we'd like to have you.' I said yes. He said, 'Do you have any things in particular that you want?' And I said I want to make sure the staff is taken care of. It took Dave time to put those things together. Dave wanted to keep us, and we wanted to stay."

King assistant coaches Ray Bennett, Mark Hardy and John Van Boxmeer and goaltending consultant Andy Nowicki also signed one-year extensions, with one-year club options for 2005-06.

"We all have our own delineations and responsibilities," Bennett said. "Andy's got a good sense or feel for delegation. One thing about Andy is that he's a lot like I'd imagine a head football coach is. He delegates responsibility and he's aware of what you're doing, but he's not watching over your shoulder. The way he's set it up is there's an offensive coordinator [Van Boxmeer] and a defensive coordinator [Hardy] and a technical person like myself."

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