Derek Plante is returning to the Chicago Blackhawks to serve as an assistant coach, according to Matt Wellens of The Rink Live.
Plante, 51, spent the previous two seasons at his alma mater, Minnesota Duluth, as an associate head coach. He returned to Duluth after five seasons as a development coach with the Blackhawks (2015-20). Prior to his first stint in Chicago, Plante spent six seasons as an assistant coach for Duluth.
Plante helped guide the Bulldogs to the 2011 NCAA championship and a 2021 Frozen Four appearance. He also served as the head coach for the U.S. under-18 team and led them to a bronze medal at the 2021 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament.
Selected in the eighth round of the 1989 NHL Draft by the Buffalo Sabres, Plante won the Stanley Cup with the Dallas Stars in 1999 and played with Blackhawks head coach Luke Richardson on the Philadelphia Flyers in 2000-01. Plante scored 248 points (96 goals, 152 assists) in 450 regular-season games. He added 16 points (six goals, 10 assists) in 41 playoff games. He played for the Sabres (1993-95), Stars (1998-00), Blackhawks (2000), and Flyers (2000-01).
Derek Plante has three sons: Zam, Max, and Victor. The Pittsburgh Penguins selected Zam in the fifth round of this year's draft. He will play for Hermantown (Minnesota) High School again and/or the Chicago Steel of the USHL next season.
Minnesota Duluth-Blackhawks Connections
There are several connections between Minnesota Duluth and the Chicago Blackhawks. Chicago's associate general manager Norm Maciver was an All-American and Hobey Baker Award finalist for Duluth. Pro scout Brigette Lacquette played defense for the Bulldogs.
Three Chicago prospects also played for Duluth this past season: Dominic James, Wyatt Kaiser, and Connor Kelley. James, a sophomore center, and Kaiser, a junior defenseman, will return next season. Kelley transferred to Providence College.