Four Takeaways From Bruce Cassidy’s Press Conference

Bruce Cassidy took over for Claude Julien in 2017


June 10, 2022

The laundry list of questions the Bruins face got a bit longer when Boston announced it relieved Bruce Cassidy of his head coaching duties earlier this week.

Cassidy led the Bruins to the Stanley Cup playoffs in each of his six seasons, bringing the B’s to the Stanley Cup Final in 2019 before falling in Game 7 to the St. Louis Blues. He earned the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s top coach in 2020 after the Bruins finished the season a league-best 44-14-12.

General manager Don Sweeney met with reporters Tuesday to shed some light on the decision to let Cassidy go, and Cassidy had his turn to speak Thursday morning.

Here are some takeaways from his press conference.

Cassidy was hopeful to finish out his contract
There was one year remaining on Cassidy’s contract with the Bruins — something he had hoped to fulfill. President Cam Neely was noncommittal when he spoke to reporters in his year-end media availability about bringing Cassidy back, but the now-former head coach will have to look for a new home.

“I wanted to come back and coach and the Bruins,” Cassidy told reporters over Zoom on Thursday, per 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Ty Anderson. “It’s been a privilege and an honor. You know, the 14 years here, in different capacities in the organization, and the Bruin is basically tattooed to me. So, that’s the difficult part: the friendships you make, business relationships with people, the personal relationships.”

Cassidy truly embraced Boston as his home, frequently attending Red Sox games, building a relationship with New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and constantly showing support for the other Boston teams.

Teams have called Cassidy
It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Cassidy land on his feet sooner rather than later, and it appears he’s already drawing interest from teams who are in need of a head coach.

“In respect to the teams, I’m not going to go through them, but I have talked to a number of teams,” Cassidy said. “I want to get back to work. Hopefully it’s a really good fit, the best fit possible.”

While he wouldn’t name names, Sportnet’s Jeff Marek said on Friday’s “32 Thoughts” podcast he believes Cassidy has spoken, or will speak to the Dallas Stars, Vegas Golden Knights and Philadelphia Flyers.

Cassidy certainly would be a good fit for any of the above teams. And if he were to go to the Flyers, he’d see his former team quite a bit.

Cassidy wants to take Patrice Bergeron with him
Can you blame him? Bergeron just won his record-breaking fifth Selke Trophy and continues to play at an elite level at 36 years old.

“Well, I would like to take Bergy with me,” Cassidy said. “First of all, because I think he’s an unbelievable player, human being and leader. I thought we had a tremendous relationship and not much else to say. I respected the hell out of everything he did.”

The bad news for Cassidy? Bergeron made it clear it’s Bruins or retirement.

The Bruins were lucky to have Cassidy
Cassidy truly enjoyed coaching the Bruins and called it a dream come true to do so. He sustained quite a bit of success after taking over for Claude Julien in 2017. But all good things must to an end, so they say, and the Black and Gold will always have a special place in Cassidy’s heart.

“I wanted to come back and coach the Bruins,” Cassidy said. “It’s been a privilege and an honor. Fourteen years here in different capacities in the organization. The Bruin is basically tattooed to me. So, that’s the difficult part: the friendships you make, business relationships with people, the personal relationships.”

What’s next for the Bruins remains to be seen, but their interesting offseason just got a bit more interesting.

Thumbnail photo via Paul Rutherford/USA TODAY Sports Images
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