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Blackhawks hire Waite as goaltending coach

Tribune reporter

Corey Crawford and Antti Raanta have a new voice to help guide them through the 2014-15 season.

The Chicago Blackhawks hired Jimmy Waite as their new goaltending coach Monday, replacing the fired Steve Weeks. 

Waite is a former Hawks goalie and is the brother of Stephane Waite, who was the Hawks' goaltending coach for a decade before leaving for the Montreal Canadiens prior to the 2013-14 season.

“I’m very excited to come back to the Chicago Blackhawks, the team that drafted me in 1987,” Jimmy Waite said in a statement. “I look forward to working with Corey (Crawford) and Antti (Raanta), and to help contribute to the success of this organization.”

After the Hawks selected Waite with the No. 8 overall pick in the 1987 entry draft, the netminder appeared in 58 games with the team over parts of eight seasons from 1988 to 1997 while serving as the backup to Eddie Belfour. Waite also played for the San Jose Sharks and Phoenix Coyotes, appearing in 106 career NHL games from 1988 to 1999. 

“We are pleased to welcome Jimmy back to our organization in his new role,” Hawks general manager Stan Bowman said in a statement. “He has over two decades of professional hockey experience and will be a great addition to our coaching staff.”

The 45-year-old Waite spent the last three seasons as the goaltending coach for the Chicoutimi Sagueneens of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

Weeks lasted one season with the Hawks but coach Joel Quenneville decided to let him go, calling it a "tough situation."

"It’s something we just wanted to do," Quenneville said recently. "It was my decision."

Twitter @ChrisKuc

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