The Boston Bruins have a new coach for the first time in a decade, but that won’t change the team’s goal for this season: make the Stanley Cup playoffs.
After Claude Julien was fired Tuesday, interim head coach Bruce Cassidy now is tasked with ending Boston’s two-season playoff drought.
“We still feel, based on the other teams in our conference, that we still have a chance, obviously, to make the playoffs,” Bruins president Cam Neely said Thursday on the “Felger & Mazz” show on 98.5 The Sports Hub. “We’re not giving up on that. We want to see what kind of voice Bruce will bring to the team.”
The Bruins entered Thursday night’s game against the San Jose Sharks at TD Garden out of a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
The B’s, who sit in fourth place in the Atlantic Division, have 58 points through 55 games and sit two points behind the Ottawa Senators and Toronto Maple Leafs. They also are one point behind the Philadelphia Flyers for the second wild-card spot.
This doesn’t seem like a bad position for the Bruins to be in, but they have fewer chances to pick up points than their conference rivals because of their games played. Boston already has played 55 games, which is two or three more than most East teams.
The Bruins need to improve their home record to solidify a playoff spot. They own a disappointing 12-13-0 record at TD Garden, but they’ll have a chance to improve that mark with a three-game homestand through this weekend.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports Images