Sharks

Sharks

Sharks interim coach Bob Boughner is back home in Windsor, Ontario, with his wife and four children. 

While his future with the franchise is not yet known, it certainly does seem like he is the obvious frontrunner to be behind San Jose’s bench for next season and beyond.

We caught up with the former NHL defenseman who’s now in his second coaching stint with San Jose.

NBC Sports California: On going from assistant to interim coach on the same day all of the other staff were dismissed:

Boughner: “It was sad to see those guys having to change their lives that second. And also exciting for me getting a chance. And a lot of unknowns. At that point, when Doug called I didn’t know what my staff would be, or how we would pick up the pieces. It was a day full of drama and mixed emotions, for sure.”

On what improvements he noticed during the final three months, despite trades, injuries and other adversities:

“There was a ton of change, in the style of play. We wanted to switch some things around to not be so predictable. I thought if anything -- and this is no knock to Pete [DeBoer], he’s an amazing coach -- but the team played the same way for four or five years and I think the players were looking for a change as well. We wanted to change our attack, our offensive game a little bit.”

 

On the consistent defensive miscues for San Jose, specifically being out of position:

“We got a little guilty of that at times in the beginning of the season. We got so worried about killing motion and stopping plays defensively, we’d be jumping so hard and getting guys out of position. So when I took over, it’s: Take a step back, play a little more conservative. Making sure you’re still going to battle, and jump and check when you can. But you’re not going to get two and three guys running out of position.”

On the players taking this past season personally, and applying it towards the next one:

“I think the guys are going to be ready, because of the experience they’ve had in the last two months. I think there’s going to be a little bit of a bad taste in everybody’s mouth -- should be a lot of bad taste in everybody’s mouth about this season and how it went.”

On what needs to improve with the Sharks for next season:

“I really think that we need to get back to playing responsibly. There’s got to be an emphasis put on accountability, and playing as a team and a family, for each other. Sometimes we got away from that last year. Not throwing blame on any player, but there was a lot of turmoil. And it’s a lot for a player to focus on coming to the rink and doing his job and playing for the guy next to you when you’re under that turmoil.”

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On what it would mean to lose the ‘interim’ tag:

“I learned a lot from my experience [as head coach] in Florida. And I learned a lot working under Pete DeBoer. You look at the guys who have gone through the league in their second time around -- Craig Berube has won a Stanley Cup, [Mike] Sullivan in Pittsburgh’s second time around. All those guys, you’re better for it. I’ll be better at it from my experience as the interim head coach, too.”