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Tampa Bay fires Guy Boucher

Mar 24, 2013, 8:40 AM EDT

Guy Boucher AP

Guy Boucher’s number is up in Tampa Bay.

General Manager Steve Yzerman announced this morning that they were relieving Boucher of his coaching duties, ending his run as the team’s head coach after two seasons and 31 games this year.

The Lightning got out to a 13-17-1 record this season and sit in fourth place in the Southeast Division but just three points ahead of Florida for last in the Eastern Conference. Yzerman’s comment on Boucher’s departure shows that things just didn’t go their way this year.

“Guy has poured his heart and soul into the Lightning organization for these past three years and we appreciate all the work he has done,” said Yzerman upon making the announcement. “But ultimately I am not satisfied with the direction we are heading and I believe making a change today is in the best interest of our franchise.”

The Lightning play in Winnipeg tonight and assistant coaches Martin Raymond and Dan Lacroix will share coaching duties for that game.

As for who will ultimately take over for Boucher as the new bench boss, former Sabres coach Lindy Ruff will jump to the front of the discussion, but a more likely choice to take over would be the franchise’s current AHL head coach in Syracuse, Jon Cooper.

  1. capsfan19 - Mar 24, 2013 at 8:46 AM

    Wow. Bombshell!

    • eigglesnosuperbowls - Mar 24, 2013 at 10:15 AM

      Honestly to be fired in this shortened lockout season is dirty pool ,,,, the time clock of the players coaches and staff are totally off ! Its a stupid and classless move !

      • ravenscaps48 - Mar 24, 2013 at 10:28 AM

        Terrible move! He’s a great coach with lazy players

      • eigglesnosuperbowls - Mar 24, 2013 at 10:32 AM

        This was all about Stevie Y ! I would bet the farm his new hire will have Red Wing ties !

      • bmoreredfury311 - Mar 24, 2013 at 10:34 AM

        Yea definitely not the year to panic, Guy is great coach that knows hows to play shut down hockey. This team has been soo injury prone no wounder their losing. He’ll bounce back, watch Buffalo pick him up.

      • 8man - Mar 24, 2013 at 3:40 PM

        I agree. You can’t think you know anything with this silliness of a season. That being said, I’m damn glad we have at least this.

  2. esracerx46 - Mar 24, 2013 at 8:46 AM

    Was expecting him to at least finish out the season. I guess Yzerman still feels theirs a chance they can make the playoffs.

  3. lsxphotog - Mar 24, 2013 at 8:51 AM

    This was absolutely necessary. I always liked him, and I enjoyed his occasional intensity. However, Boucher has been figured out since that game the Flyers stopped play amd refused to enter the neutral zone. His system doesn’t work for Tampa and I feel his need to change lines up as often as he did was a poor idea.

  4. dsonashville28 - Mar 24, 2013 at 8:53 AM

    Yzerman should take a great deal of blame for this as well. Failure to secure a starting goalie, along with their horrible corps of defensemen after Victor Hedman. But of course, the head coach is always the one to take the fall.

    • govtminion - Mar 24, 2013 at 8:56 AM

      You beat me to posting it- just like in Buffalo, the coach is getting fired, but he had a pretty rotten team to work with. Until Yzerman brings in real defensemen and some decent goaltending, this team just won’t hang with the big teams in the East, period. (I’ll grant him this- I figured Lindback would do better than he has)

      • tbbolts91 - Mar 24, 2013 at 10:14 AM

        Lindback is a backup. We need that sensational starter. And maybe some defense. Our defensive system didn’t work under boucher

  5. travishenryskid - Mar 24, 2013 at 9:02 AM

    Now hire Lindy Ruff and trade Hedman for Miller and Regher.

  6. mj1818 - Mar 24, 2013 at 9:08 AM

    Laviolette should be the next to go the flyers just need to rebuild

  7. steelers88 - Mar 24, 2013 at 9:10 AM

    Wow I’m actually kind of shocked that TB would fire Boucher.

  8. friedberg7 - Mar 24, 2013 at 9:19 AM

    Boucher will get a new job somewhere else. He isn’t a bad coach and 1-3-1 does work at times. Tampa only have Stamkos and St. Louis. Rest of team stinks. Tampa needs to go after Ruff before Philly does at the end of the season.

    • florida727 - Mar 24, 2013 at 9:29 AM

      Ever hear of a guy named LaCavalier?

      I never understand these moves. Last I checked Boucher has yet to be offsides or called for a penalty. I know for a fact his goals against average is pretty good and his save percentage is pretty much perfect. I know. I know. You can’t “fire” the players, but I got news for you, the problem isn’t the coach. It rarely is. Surround a coach with better players and all of a sudden he’s a genius. Surround him with less talent and he can’t coach Midgets. Yzerman needs to look in a mirror if he’s looking to blame someone.

      • friedberg7 - Mar 24, 2013 at 9:42 AM

        Lecavalier’s play has declined. Don’t even notice him anymore in games against the Pens unless he is trying to pick a fight with Malkin. Boucher is a lot like Bylsma. Is a decent coach whose team either makes him look better or worse. Yzerman needs to go after a veteran goalie who isn’t a career backup (Garon).

  9. lsxphotog - Mar 24, 2013 at 9:45 AM

    Yeah, a lot of ignorant post have been made above. There is much more to goaltending than just the numbers. One number that unsettled me were starts. Lindback had too many starts for a goalie looking to transition to the starting role. He really should have been eased into the role. The kid had a ton of pressure riding on him. That aside, Brewer, Crombeen, Lee, Bergeron, and Malone have to go. Lee stayed in the roster far too long for absolutely piss poor defensive skill.

    Boucher will not find a STARTING role anytime soon.

    • boltsfan777 - Mar 24, 2013 at 10:56 AM

      But he might get a second-line coaching job???

      • lsxphotog - Mar 25, 2013 at 2:20 PM

        Haha, no, but he won’t be a head coach anywhere else, at least not in the NHL or soon.

  10. eigglesnosuperbowls - Mar 24, 2013 at 10:19 AM

    You do realize we are not talking Brian Boucher right !

  11. boltsfan777 - Mar 24, 2013 at 10:35 AM

    I get it, but I was still really shocked when I read this. A paid professional player shouldn’t hear the phrases “weren’t prepared” and “lack of urgency” after a game. How many years have these guys been preparing for games? You get up, have breakfast, morning skate, pre-game meal, and go play hockey. It’s not strategy or the pictures the coaches draw on the little marker board on the bench during games.

    Any fan who watches Bolts games can see it’s lack of execution of basics and lack of desire to win the puck. The rookies have been putting the veterans to shame lately, with no exceptions. They are prepared… so why not the veterans? Boucher is an excellent coach, and will succeed somewhere else.

  12. wethog66 - Mar 24, 2013 at 11:09 AM

    Now that he is gone can someone explain what caused the unusual scar on his right cheek? This Caps fan wants to know. lol

    • boltsfan777 - Mar 24, 2013 at 11:23 AM

      No explanation, but it’s a pretty cool scar.

    • ravenscaps48 - Mar 24, 2013 at 11:26 AM

      A horrific paper plane accident in 8th grade caused the scar

    • eigglesnosuperbowls - Mar 24, 2013 at 12:00 PM

      Maybe he will go on Oprah and she will hand him a tissue to wipe it off !

  13. jernster21 - Mar 24, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    I don’t follow the east nearly as much as the west but was under the impression that Guy Boucher was a pretty good coach, but you have to give it up to Stevie Y for rolling heads for mediocrity. Avs fans would kill to have someone in charge that had the balls to make changes and prove that mediocrity isn’t acceptable. Instead, we show up for one out of five games, generally look like an AHL caliber team, and sit at the bottom of the western conference. Oh how times have changed.

  14. DonkeyStick - Mar 24, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    Let me guess…..Tampa Bay is going to blame Zac Rinaldo for this too?

    • grudenthediva - Mar 24, 2013 at 2:20 PM

      Completely his fault. Just like the 1-3-1 is to blame for Philly being so mediocre the last few seasons. Is Lavy still crying his eyes out and hiding behind Bryzgalov?

      • DonkeyStick - Mar 24, 2013 at 2:41 PM

        Wouldn’t know, too busy watching my team win Stanley Cups.

  15. gudasbeard1 - Mar 24, 2013 at 2:18 PM

    Yep. This is Rinaldo’s fault.

  16. gudasbeard1 - Mar 24, 2013 at 2:22 PM

    The truth is outside of Gudas we have nobody that can lay the wood. Crombeen gets beat down every fight, Aullie would lose to LeCavalier, Hedman doesn’t fight and the rest of the guys are either hurt or back in the AHL. We need a few guys who can really fight. I still get chills watching Letang beat down Timmonen.

    • DonkeyStick - Mar 24, 2013 at 2:40 PM

      Tampa Bay has given up third most goals in the east and you want fighters?

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