Just eight days after being fired by the Boston Bruins, Bruce Cassidy has a new head coaching gig.
ESPN and NHL Network analyst Kevin Weekes first reported that the former Boston Bruins head coach will be hired as the new head coach of the Vegas Golden Knights.
— Kevin Weekes (@KevinWeekes) June 14, 2022
Just 68 minutes later, the Golden Knights made it official.
🚨 COACHING UPDATE 🚨
— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) June 14, 2022
Bruce Cassidy will replace Pete DeBoer who was fired after three seasons behind the Vegas Golden Knights bench and following a season when Vegas didn’t make the Stanley Cup playoffs, after a being a preseason Stanley Cup favorite. This could be a perfect fit for Cassidy give the fact that the Golden Knights are a veteran-laden team that if not for an injury-plagued season and some underachieving, is still ready to contend for the 2023 Stanley Cup if they can stay healthy.
The Knights still have a forward core that includes Jack Eichel, Max Pacioretty, Mark Stone, Jonathan Marchessault, William Karlsson and rising star Nicolas Roy. They also have a blue line that features Alex Pietrangelo, Alec Martinez, Shea Theodore, Brayden McNabb and rising star Zach Whitecloud. As of now, Robin Lehner is the starter for the Golden Knights, but there have been some NHL trade rumors that, the Knights will either bring in a 1B to play with Lehner or replace him all together.
Given the fact that Bruce Cassidy was seemingly fired by the Bruins because he was butting heads with too many younger players on the roster, he should acclimate himself into a Knights’ dressing room that has veterans ready to win it all.
This past season was the first time that the Vegas Golden Knights didn’t make the playoffs since their inaugural season that saw them make it to Game 5 of the 2018 Stanley Cup Final before falling to the Washington Capitals.
Bruce Cassidy was fired on June 6 after leading the Bruinss to the playoffs in all six seasons behind the Boston bench, including a 2019 run to the Stanley Cup Final before losing in Game 7 to the St. Louis Blues. Cassidy finished his Boston Bruins body of work with 245 wins and a .672 points percentage that is near the top of all coaches in the Original Six history of the Black and Gold, and even this season he found a way to ignite a struggling team by juggling around the forward lines coming out of the team’s holiday/COVID break.
It should be noted that current Golden Knights president of hockey operations George McPhee gave Bruce Cassidy his first NHL head coaching job with the Washington Capitals in 2002.