Blackhawks hire Graham as coach

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The Chicago Blackhawks hired Dirk Graham as new head coach. Graham, who played eight seasons with the Blackhawks, replaces Craig Hartsburg who was fired after the team missed the playoffs for the first time in three decades.

"Do we have enough talent to win the Stanley Cup next year? I don't know," Graham said. "Do we have enough talent to make the playoffs? Definitely."

Graham sounded happy about his new job, but cautioned that coaches can only do so much and challenged the Blackhawks players to step it up.

"The players are going to have to make that commitment," he said. "I believe in this team. I certainly wouldn't be standing here taking this job if I didn't think we had the hockey players to succeed."

General manager Bob Murray said he had met with Graham the night Hartsburg was fired two months ago, but didn't want to make the decision then.

"I just kept coming back to him. I played with the guy. I knew what kind of leadership he had. I know what instantaneous respect he commands when he walks in the locker room," Murray said.

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