Yea, so this is a monster move.
Martin was last coaching in December of 2011. He got fired as the head coach of the Habs. But, before that, Martin led the Habs to a stunning upset of a certain Eastern Conference powerhouse that hasn't been the same since in the playoffs:
Martin is all business, and has 600 career wins as an NHL coach.
Most notably, Martin is known as a defense-first coach. Here is a good read from none other than Pierre McGuire when Martin was fired from the Habs...
Critics have slammed Martin, not just for his safe approach to the game, but also the way he’s used his players. They say veterans often got preference over younger talents in terms of ice time, and they charged that even some veterans have been misused. Erik Cole, for example, was kept off the power play early on and Martin defended his decision, explaining that Cole hadn’t been productive with the extra man while playing last season in Carolina. Martin eventually reversed himself and Cole now leads the club in power play tallies.
Pretty clear that Jacques Martin hated Erik Cole, so he knows whats up. But the real gist of the article is Martin is all about defense, and despite having a very good defense, Martin is a massive upgrade over Todd Reirden. Even though Reirden was retained, Martin is now top dog one would think.
Not sure what else to make of the move, but it no question is a curious one.