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Ducks fire Randy Carlyle, hire Bruce Boudreau

Dec 1, 2011, 1:43 AM EDT

Bruce Boudreau AP

Anaheim Ducks fans clamoring for a big change got their wish, but that huge alteration won’t come in the form of a Bobby Ryan trade – at least not yet. Instead, the team made a stunning decision by replacing Randy Carlyle with Bruce Boudreau. (Oddly enough, the Ducks front page currently has a photo of an angry Boudreau, which is probably the opposite of how he’s feeling right now..)

Here’s what Ducks GM Bob Murray said about the move:

“This was an extremely difficult decision,” Murray said. “Randy is a terrific head coach, and did a tremendous job for us for six-plus seasons. We thank him greatly for his hard work and dedication to our franchise, not the least of which was a Stanley Cup championship. At this time, we simply felt a new voice was needed. Bruce is a proven winner with a great track record, and we are optimistic we can turn this season around under his leadership.”

A quick look at Boudreau in Anaheim

Talk about a speedy turnaround. Boudreau was fired by the Washington Capitals on Monday and didn’t even go a full week without getting another NHL head coaching gig. Then again, speed is the name of the game with Boudreau; the Caps’ best moments came when they attacked with reckless velocity and the expressive head coach recently became the fastest to 200 wins. (Boudreau’s overall record is 201-88-40.)

From a personnel standpoint, this decision makes a ton of sense. If it’s safe to assume that Boudreau might go back to a wide-open style, then he will get the chance to deploy an arsenal of dangerous offensive weapons. Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry and (hopefully) Ryan form a core of prodigious scoring talents while Teemu Selanne should pump in his typically staggering amount of goals. The team also features a few nice scoring options from the blueline, so maybe Boudreau could help Lubomir Visnovsky and Cam Fowler produce some serious magic. (Kurtis Foster‘s booming shot might be useful, as well.)

The Ducks have traditionally hung Jonas Hiller out to dry and it’s unlikely that Boudreau will do what a former Norris Trophy winner couldn’t completely manage, but the potential bump in goal support might make a big difference anyway.

A glance at Carlyle

Much like Paul Maurice, Carlyle was saddled with a top-heavy roster and usually made the most of it. Carlyle has one serious trump card over Maurice, though: that 2007 Stanley Cup ring. With that in mind, it wouldn’t be shocking if he lands on his feet … although one would imagine he’ll take a little longer than Boudreau.

***

So what do you think? Is this a smart hire by the Ducks or a step in the wrong direction? Share your thoughts in the comments.

  1. gbiscottagecheesefatties - Dec 1, 2011 at 1:51 AM

    that’s exactly what I said too “That didn’t take long”

  2. hanktheking - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:09 AM

    James, won’t Boudge be saddled with that same “top-heavy roster” that Carlyle was? Wasn’t he saddled with a top-heavy roster in Washington? Top-heavy rosters don’t win in May and June when depth is one of the deciding factors.

  3. danphipps01 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:25 AM

    Guess that little theory about the ownership not being willing to eat two coaching salaries is out the window. Then again, when your only other “bright” idea is trying to trade Bobby Ryan from a weak position…

    Well, Bruce, If you bring the run-and-gun glory days that turned the Capitals into a powerhouse to Anaheim, you’ll be well-received there. Lord knows you’ve got the scorers to pull it off again. Best of luck. You deserve it.

  4. bcjim - Dec 1, 2011 at 5:51 AM

    Should be perfect for BB since he also fancies himself an actor. Being so close to Hollyweird he won’t need to limit his thespian activities to local yokel rug cleaner and car dealer commercials.

    Good luck, Bruce. Sorry it didn’t work out here.

    • govtminion - Dec 1, 2011 at 9:47 AM

      Yeah, but those ads were pretty fun- you can tell he enjoyed doing them beyond just reading his lines. The carpet ones especially were great.

  5. icelovinbrotha215 - Dec 1, 2011 at 7:18 AM

    This may be the ‘kick in the butt’ that spring the Ducks into action. Never a dull moment in the NHL these days…

  6. polegojim - Dec 1, 2011 at 9:58 AM

    Proof of Getzlaf the Coach Killer. The Ducks were dogging it.

  7. nhlbruins90 - Dec 1, 2011 at 10:43 AM

    We all thought he’d be back at work soon, but that was REALLY fast. Much like the Caps, it’s just what the ducks need.

  8. stakex - Dec 1, 2011 at 11:45 AM

    Good for Boudreau. A change was needed in Washington, but hes still a top notch coach who should do very well in Anaheim.

    Hopefully he abandons his half hearted defense first theory that got him fired in Washington and returns to his run and gun system that made him popular. I don’t much like the Ducks, but it was a ton of fun to watch in Washington and I would love to see it again.

  9. hague507 - Dec 1, 2011 at 11:49 AM

    Good luck to Bruce. If he’s able to bring the Ducks to the finals it will certainly confirm he was not the problem in DC. Of course if Hunter brings the Caps to the finals in the next 2 years, it will be the opposite.

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