Wild fire coach Boudreau despite playoff surge

Wild fire coach Boudreau despite playoff surge

Greg WyshynskiESPN

Bruce Boudreau's wild tenure in Minnesota has come to an end.

General manager Bill Guerin fired Boudreau on Friday, ending his four-season stint with the organization. Dean Evason, who was an assistant coach for Boudreau in Washington and then in Minnesota, will be named interim coach.

The timing of the firing this late in the season is curious. The Wild have surged of late, winning seven of 11 games (going 7-3-1) to move within three points of a wild-card spot in the Western Conference. But Boudreau, 65, was in the final year of a contract that reportedly paid him over $3 million per season.

The coach went 158-110-35 with the Wild, making the playoffs in his first two seasons but losing in the first round in five games both times. In 13 seasons as a head coach with the Capitals, Anaheim Ducks and Wild, Boudreau is 567-302-115, having made the playoffs 10 times.

Boudreau's time in Minnesota was a rarity in that he coached for three general managers. He was hired by Chuck Fletcher in May 2016, just eight days after being fired in Anaheim. He was kept around by GM Paul Fenton during his only year with the team. When Guerin was hired to replace Fenton last summer, he gave Boudreau a vote of confidence.

"I'm behind him 100%. He's a good coach that's been around this game a long time, he's won a ton of games, and I've got full confidence in him," Guerin said when he was hired.

Boudreau joins a collection of big-name, successful head coaches looking for jobs, including former Nashville Predators coach Peter Laviolette, former Vegas Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant and former Toronto Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock.


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