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Carlyle on Ducks: “I wish them all the luck”

Randy Carlyle

FILE - In this Sept. 19, 2011 file photo, Anaheim Ducks coach Randy Carlyle runs drills during NHL hockey practice in Anaheim, Calif. Fed up with the Ducks’ inexplicably slow start, the club fired the Stanley Cup-winning coach and his staff late Wednesday night, Nov. 30, 2011. Anaheim swiftly replaced Carlyle with former Washington coach Bruce Boudreau, who was dismissed by the Capitals just two days earlier. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson, File)


Bruce Boudreau’s lightning-fast turnaround stole much of the spotlight from the guy he replaced in Anaheim: Randy Carlyle. Obviously the unusual nature of that situation and Boudreau’s higher profile explains much of that, but in a fairer world, Carlyle’s dismissal would have been a bigger deal. After all, the former Norris Trophy winner accomplished what Boudreau couldn’t: winning a Stanley Cup.

ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun spoke with Carlyle about the firing. While Carlyle called it “an emotional time” and reflected on how much a future uprooting will affect his family (particularly his 15-year-old daughter), he didn’t express any ill will toward the franchise.

“Murph (Murray) and I had a difference of opinion on how things were going. That happens,” Carlyle said. “But the way I look at it, I want the team to win. I wish them all the luck. I want the Anaheim Ducks to win hockey games. Right now though, it’s tougher on my family more than anything.”

Boudreau didn’t have much of a grieving period, but Carlyle said that he will take a few weeks to decompress. He joked that he’s already cleaned his garage “three or four times” but the looming threat of relocation is weighing heavily on his family.

Then again, there’s one idea that he didn’t discuss. What if his next job is just a stone’s throw from Anaheim? Look, I think Terry Murray is a very good coach, but it seems like the Los Angeles Kings reached a plateau with him behind the bench. As great as they are in their own end, the Kings have scored just 12 goals in their last seven games. The players deserve most of the blame there, but some of that stems from the system and the coach.

Carlyle could be the guy who takes a good team and spurs it on to greatness. Obviously, this isn’t based on any rumors; it’s just a shot in the dark.

Either way, the consensus is that Carlyle will find a job somewhere. It will be interesting to find out where that place ends up being.