2012 NHL Playoffs: 5 Coaches to Replace Dale Hunter

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2012 NHL Playoffs: 5 Coaches to Replace Dale Hunter
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Less than two days after being eliminated by the Rangers on Saturday night, the Washington Capitals were dealt a potentially crushing blow when Dale Hunter stepped down as the team's head coach. 

Despite posting a rather unimpressive record during the regular season, the Caps' 14-game postseason run was more than enough to secure Hunter a contract extension, but the legendary former team captain opted to return to London, Ontario.  

Now, the Caps will be moving on to their third head coach in less than a year, and George McPhee has faces the difficult task of selecting Hunter's successor.  

Assuming McPhee was impressed with the Caps' play against Boston and New York, it appears likely that he'll go for a hard-nosed coach who preaches team defense and holds players accountable.  With that in mind, here are five candidates McPhee should be looking at to replace Hunter.  

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