Minnesota Wild Fire Head Coach Bruce Boudreau
The Minnesota Wild shared this morning that they are parting was with head coach Bruce Boudreau. In a message shared on social media, the team simply explained that General Manager Bill Guerin was announcing that Boudreau is being relieved of his head coaching duties.
Boudreau was in his fourth year with the Wild, having led Minnesota to short-lived playoff runs in his three and a half years with the team. With Boudreau at the helm, the Wild lost in the first round of the playoffs in the 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 seasons, falling 4 games to 1 in both of those first-round series. They missed the playoffs last year, and the team is currently 3 points out of the second wild card spot right now.
The team has been undergoing some drastic changes in the past couple seasons, with short-tenured GM Paul Fenton trading away a lot of big names last season in the name of reshaping the team, before being fired after his first season with the team. As the team, and new GM Bill Guerin, attempt to shape Minnesota into a team that can not only get into the playoffs, but also win, the decision was made to eliminate Boudreau.
Boudreau was in the final year of a four-year contract with Minnesota, earning a 158-110 record during the regular season and a 2-8 record in the playoffs.
Aside from analyzing the roster, team culture has been a topic of discussion over the past few years. Guerin commented after sending Jason Zucker to Pittsburgh that "if there is quit, there will be more trades". He explained that he expects to contend for the playoffs this year, which isn't out of the question being only a few points out of wild card position right now.
When Boudreau was hired, some fans and pundits pointed to him as a coach that can win, but not in the playoffs. His head coaching record points to that trend, getting into the playoffs in each of his four years with Washington, but not making it to the conference finals in any of those years before he was fired mid-season in the 2011-2012 season.
With Anaheim, he missed the playoffs his first season, but then made the playoffs the next four years with the Ducks, making it to the conference finals only one time but not making it past that point. With the Wild, he lost in the first round of the playoffs his first two years here before missing the playoffs last season.
Not counting the two years he was fired mid-season, Boudreau made the playoffs 10 of 12 seasons as a head coach. During that same tenure, he made it to the conference championship series once.
Michael Russo reports sources tell him Wild assistant coach Dean Evason will be named interim coach.
The Wild are scheduled to play their next game on Saturday, hosting San Jose at 4 pm.