NHL

Montreal Canadiens hire Kirk Muller as associate coach

The Montreal Canadiens have hired Kirk Muller as an associate coach on Michel Therrien's staff. General manager Marc Bergevin announced the move Thursday that returned Muller to his coaching roots.

GM Bergevin says former player and coach has a "thorough knowledge of the Montreal market"

Kirk Muller, seen here in a May 8, 2010 file photo, has been hired as an associated coach by the Montreal Canadiens. (Gene J. Puskar/The Associated Press)

Kirk Muller is returning to the Montreal Canadiens as an associate coach.

The former Canadiens captain, who was an assistant coach in Montreal from 2006 to 2011, will rejoin the Canadiens staff under head coach Michel Therrien, the NHL club announced Thursday.

The Kingston, Ont., native informed the St. Louis Blues this week that he would leave that club after two seasons as an assistant under Ken Hitchcock. The Blues had reportedly offered their entire staff contract extensions.

The 50-year-old Muller was particularly strong in handling special teams when he was with the Canadiens, an area where the team has struggled in recent years.

"We are extremely happy with his desire to return to the Canadiens organization," general manager Marc Bergevin said in a release.

Muller played 19 seasons in the NHL before retiring in 2003, including a stint with Montreal from 1991-95. He won a Stanley Cup with the Canadiens in 1993 and was named captain in 1994.

He became head coach of the Carolina Hurricanes in 2011, compiling a record 80-80-27 over three seasons. He joined the Blues in 2014.

There was no immediate word on whether any of the 2015-16 staff would be let go. Muller and Therrien are to speak to the media on Friday.

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