Claude Julien may have coached the Bruins to their first Stanley Cup since 1972, but it appears as though he’s worn out his welcome in Boston.
After another late-season collapse, the Bruins missed the playoffs for the second consecutive season under Julien. Boston’s struggles shouldn’t all fall on Julien (a poor/aging defense certainly didn’t help), but as is often the case in these kind of situations, management decides it’s easier to fire one coach than to find 20 new players.
After Saturday’s elimination loss to the Senators, Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron stood up for his bench boss.
“I’ve said a million times that Claude has been the best coach I’ve had,” said Bergeron, per WEEI. “It’s definitely not on him. It should be on us. His system is there, the game plan is there. It’s about us executing, and we didn’t do that. So it should fall back on the players.”
Will Bergeron’s opinion be taken into consideration before the front office makes a decision?
Count CSN New England’s Joe Haggerty as one of the people who feels it’s time for the Bruins to part ways with Julien. Here’s how Haggs put it in one of his recent articles:
Julien is the best Bruins coach of my lifetime, and he will forever be revered around Boston for bringing the Cup back in 2011 amid a run of seven straight years in the postseason. But this Bruins organization is moving toward youth, skill and explosive offense, and these are not the strengths of a Julien-coached team. You can have an elite head coach that isn’t a good fit for a certain team’s philosophy, and it feels like things don’t align with Julien and the Bruins organization anymore.
And to add more fuel to the fire, it looks like the Bruins don’t have a scheduled media availability for Julien on Monday.
Player availability tomorrow at Garden. No mention of Julien/GM presser which typically took place same day. Not a good sign for Claude— Joe Haggerty (@HackswithHaggs) April 10, 2016
Steve Silva mentions a possible replacement for Julien:
If Julien is fired, it wouldn’t be surprising to see him get picked up by another team fairly quickly.