Mike Keenan (pictured at left with 2006 first-round pick Michael Frolic) told Canada's TSN that Panthers captain Olli Jokinen had approached him about coaching Finland's national team in the 2008 World Cup in Quebec and 2010 Olympics held in Vancouver. Keenan also said former Panther Pavel Bure approached Keenan about coaching the Russian team.
Seems like old Mikey is selling his version of the truth. Shocking, I know.
Jokinen told the gathered media Friday in Buffalo that he hasn't talked to Keenan "since he was fired,'' and said speculation about Finland's new coach is swirling. One report quotes Bure as laughing at Keenan's notion about Team Russia. Again, no surprises there.
Here's more from Jokinen, who did add he would recommend Keenan for the job if the folks in Finland wanted his opinion. So, we may just see Iron Mike coaching the Finns after all.
"The Finnish national team is going to change the coach after this year, and there are a lot of candidates. I don't know if Mike is on their list or not,'' Jokinen said. "I haven't spoken to Mike. I know the Finnish media has contacted him and asked if he's interested.''
"It's good for Finnish hockey. There's a lot of young coaches over there, and they could learn from a guy like Keenan. There's other Canadian coaches in the Finnish League. With the Canadian coaches going there, the Finnish guys can learn from them. ButI haven't spoken to Mike, so I don't know what's going on. I just heard the news a couple days ago.''
"No one has contacted me from the federation, but I would give my vote for Keenan anyway.''