The Vegas Golden Knights have hired former Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy as their third head coach in franchise history. Cassidy will be replacing Peter DeBoer who served as head coach in 2021-22 but was fired in May after the Golden Knights failed to make the playoffs for the first time in team history.
The news of Cassidy’s hiring was first reported by NHL insider Kevin Weekes live from the Stanley Cup Final. Later, the Golden Knights made the news official at around 3 pm.
— Kevin Weekes (@KevinWeekes) June 14, 2022
Cassidy was fired on July 6th by the Boston Bruins after they were eliminated in the first round by the Carolina Hurricanes in seven games. This means that it only took Cassidy six days and 22 hours to find a new position.
There is a connection between Cassidy and Golden Knights president of hockey operations George McPhee as the two both worked together in the Washington Capitals organization. Cassidy first coached the Capitals in the early 2000’s before serving as an assistant with the Chicago Blackhawks, and eventually coaching the Bruins.
In Cassidy’s six seasons with the Bruins, he got the team to the playoffs in every appearance. In 2019, he took the Bruins all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals where they lost to Alex Pietrangelo and St. Louis Blues. In 2020, he won the Jack Adams Trophy as the leagues top coach.
Cassidy has an interesting and exciting history in hockey briefly playing in the NHL in the 80’s, coaching the Jacksonville Lizard Kings after playing in the IHL that same season, and now having three NHL teams on his resume as a head coach. He has an all-time record of 509 wins, 292 losses, 9 ties, and 53 overtime/shootout losses as a head coach.
Cassidy is a coach that tends to prefer older veteran players, which the Golden Knights have a lot of such as Pietrangelo, Mark Stone, Max Pacioretty, and Alec Martinez. He was fired from the Bruins reportedly due to how he butted heads with some of the younger players on the roster such as Jake DeBrusk.
There were several options the Golden Knights in terms of coaching options. But they made a solid hire with Cassidy. Barry Trotz, John Tortorella, and John Quenneville all remain on the coaching free agency market with the Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings, Winnipeg Jets, and Philadelphia Flyers all without a head coach.