Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Caps tie can to Bruce Boudreau for poor play, kick the can down the road

The old saying in sport is that it's easier to fire the coach than all the players and on Monday the Washington Capitals took that road to try to cure their current woes.

Bruce Boudreau, one of the most popular coaches among the NHL fraternity (and the media that cover them) was let go, the solution seemingly to the swan dive that his team has taken thus far in the year, proving once again that you can't coach a work ethic.

The visuals of the day once the announcement was made was mainly of Boudreau's benching of Ovechkin a few weeks ago, a move no doubt at the time applauded by a good portion of the remaining 29 coaches, ooops 28 (sorry Paul Maurice, we'll get to your firing on Monday next) who no doubt felt cheered by Boudreau's frustration with the non performing Russian star.

Of course, Ovechkins' play wasn't the only issue in the Capitals room, there's many in that room that could do with a good look into the mirror, for dogging it seems to have become one of the main traits of the Capitals these days.

However, for all that fraternal unity at the profession of coaching, the cold, hard reality of it came back to the forefront on Monday, as George McPhee, apparently divining that Ovie and some of his fellow Capitals had tuned out the always talkative coach and that a change was required.

The Capitals have always been one of those teams on the cusp of a Stanley Cup final berth, but inevitably seem to be a team that always comes up short, last year perhaps the best example of the Murphy's law of hockey, where if anything can go wrong it will.

This season the start was atrocious, as was the play of some of the key components of the Capitals roster, it would take a pretty brave General Manager to move the franchise player out of the line up, in the end, as it always has been, it seems its much easier to move the coach, exit Bruce Boudreau.

Taking his place is Dale Hunter, a player who never if memory serves correct took a shift off, held his team mates accountable and wasn't afraid to get in the face of an opponent if the need arose.

Traits that may come in helpful as he takes over the country club like inclinations of the Capitals.

Much has been written and said about Bruce Boudreau in the last few days, praising his character and coaching acumen, predicting that he eventually will find his way back behind an NHL bench.

Hopefully one imagines to go to a team where hard work isn't an optional kind of thing once the players take to the ice.

Washington Times-- Boudreau knows Capitals stopped responding
Washington Times-- Boudreau out, Hunter in as Capitals' coach
Washington Times-- Caps, Hunter still figuring out their new dynamic
Washington Post-- Capitals' poor play forced George McPhee to fire Bruce Boudreau
Washington Post-- Mike Shanahan on Bruce Boudreau firing
Washington Post-- Bruce Boudreau "I tried every trick that I knew and nothing was working:"
Washington Post-- Bruce Boudreau's departure continues coaching graveyard
Winnipeg Free Press-- Fired Capitals coach doesn't blame Ovechkin...
Globe and Mail-- Capitals fire Bruce Boudreau, hire Dale Hunter as new coach
Globe and Mail-- Downward spirals cost NHL coaches their jobs
Toronto Star-- Dale Hunter faces enormous hurdles in Washington
Toronto Sun-- Hunter in D. C. spotlight
Toronto Sun-- Semin, not Ovechkin, Hunter's big challenge
Toronto Sun-- Can Hunter light a fire under Semin, Ovie?
Toronto Sun-- Washington Capitals replace Boudreau with Hunter
NBC Sports-- "Did Boudreau have to go"
CBC Sports-- Is Ovechkin a coach killer?
CBC Sports-- Boudreau's row with Ovechkin cost him his job
CBC Sports-- Did Bruce Boudreau desrve to be fired in Washington?

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