The Boston Bruins didn’t win the Stanley Cup this season but Lord Stanley will be paying a visit to Cape Cod this summer.
“The Cup is going to the Cape!” former Bruins and current Vegas Golden Knights head coach Bruce Cassidy told multiple media outlets after he and the Golden Knights won the 2023 Stanley Cup with a 9-3 win over the Florida Panthers in Game 5 Tuesday night.
Whether you agreed with or disagreed with the Boston Bruins firing Bruce Cassidy as their head coach, 373 days later, Cassidy is now a Stanley Cup Champion forever. He will celebrate that feat at his family’s summer home on Cape Cod when he gets his day with the Stanley Cup.
In his first season behind the Vegas bench, Cassidy and the Golden Knights won their first Stanley Cup together. An Ottawa native, Cassidy grew up a Boston Bruins fan, and as the Bruins head coach from mid-way through the 2016-17 season until he was fired by the Bruins last June, he was always adamant about winning a Stanley Cup with his favorite team. That never happened, but after 39 years in the NHL as a player, scout, assistant, and head coach in the NHL, Cassidy finally won that coveted Stanley Cup, and he now has a second favorite team.
“You had the Bruin logo tattooed on you effectively Bruce, how describe what this last year has been like?” Sportsnet NHL analyst Kyle Bukauskas asked him postgame.
“Well, I got another one tattooed on me now don’t I?” Cassidy rhetorically replied.
"I thought we earned every step of the way."
Bruce Cassidy reflects on his life in the last year, the Golden Knights' season and their road to the Stanley Cup. pic.twitter.com/edc6WFPX2J
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) June 14, 2023
“It’s great to be in this club. You’re a winner now forever so they can’t kick you out so I love that feeling.”
By all accounts, Cassidy lost his job because a group of Boston Bruins players felt he was too hard and intense on them. The leadership core, and Don Sweeney decided a new voice was needed, and the 2020 Jack Adams award winner that led his team to the Stanley Cup Playoffs in every season he coached the Bruins was let go in favor of Jim Montgomery.
Montgomery went on to lead the Boston Bruins to the best regular season record and most points in NHL history, but the Bruins blew a 3-1 series lead and fell to the Panthers in seven games.
Cassidy and the Vegas Golden Knights took down the Winnipeg Jets in five games, the Edmonton Oilers in six, the Dallas Stars in six, and the panthers in five.
Cassidy certainly didn’t pull punches with his players, and maybe – in their eyes – to a fault with the media, but while that approach and personality didn’t work with them, it worked with the Golden Knights.
“He came in and brought an intensity that maybe we needed,” Knights captain Mark Stone told TNT after Game 5.
Apparently, what Cassidy needed was Stone and a different roster.