More than a decade after skating his final shift with the Boston Bruins, Marc Savard has ascended to a role he said he's been waiting for.
The former B's star was named head coach of the Windsor Spitfires in the Ontario Hockey League Tuesday, more than three years after formally announcing his retirement from playing but over 10 years after suffering a second concussion in a 10-month span.
"It feels amazing, I have been waiting for this opportunity," Savard said in a release from the team. "I want to be a head coach and earn my craft. I want to be here for a while and learn a lot. I can’t wait to get started."
Savard, 44, had previous coaching experience with the St. Louis Blues, joining the staff as an assistant in 2019-20 -- one year after the team defeated the Bruins in the Stanley Cup Final.
The move behind the bench in Windsor represents a homecoming for Savard, who played his junior hockey in the OHL for the Oshawa Generals. The Ottawa native twice led the OHL in scoring and remains the all-time points leader for the Generals.
Savard played 13 seasons in the NHL, his final five with the Bruins, who signed him on the same day as Zdeno Chara in July 2006 as a free agent from the Atlanta Thrashers. Savard led the B's in scoring in each of his first three seasons before his career was interrupted on a hit to the head from Matt Cooke of the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2010 which resulted in a concussion.
Savard attempted to come back in 2010-11, Boston's championship season, but registered only two goals and eight assists in 25 games before a second concussion forced him from the lineup.
The Bruins were able to successfully petition the league to get Savard's name on the Stanley Cup despite having not appeared in any postseason games.