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Category: Vancouver-Canucks

Bruce Boudreau Staying In Vancouver

Vancouver, B.C. - Vancouver Canucks General Manager Patrik Allvin announced today that Bruce Boudreau will return as head coach for the 2022.23 season.

"We are pleased to see Bruce's commitment to return to the Canucks next season," said Allvin. "He has done a great job since arriving in Vancouver and we are eager to see the team continue to perform under his leadership as they did during the second half of the season."

"My desire has always been to come back to coach this team," said Boudreau. "I love the organization, city, fans, and the players. I'm also grateful for the opportunity provided to me by Jim and Patrik to continue building what we started."

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Bruce Boudreau Should Not Be A Lame-Duck Coach

from Adam Proteau of The Hockey News,

Bruce Boudreau is one of the kindest human beings working in the NHL today.

He’s also employed by a team that’s (a) in transition, and (b) being run by a GM and president – respectively, Patrik Allvin and Jim Rutherford – who were hired after he was. Consequently, Boudreau finds himself in a delicate work situation.

Rutherford came out Tuesday and told media that Boudreau is welcome to return to the Canucks under the terms he agreed on – a two-year contract that will expire at the end of the 2022-23 season. However, that would make Boudreau a lame-duck coach next year. And that makes his future with the Canucks extremely cloudy.

Boudreau held up his end of the bargain when he was hired by Canucks owner Francesco Aquilini in early December. Boudreau took a team that looked disinterested in rising to the levels of their opponents, and he led Vancouver to a 32-15-10 record, and brought the Canucks to the fringes of the playoff race right up until the final week of the regular season. Boudreau instilled the team with confidence in itself, and the results were excellent.

However, holding onto a head coaching gig in the NHL means having the confidence of the GM and team president, and almost always, that means a head coach can only be secure in his position if he has been hired by the president and/or GM. Boudreau doesn’t have that working in his favor.

Allvin and Rutherford would earn the wrath of Canucks fans if they summarily dismissed him this summer. Instead, in making it clear there would be no contract extension for Boudreau, Canucks brass have set up Boudreau to be fired at the first extended run of sub-par play next season.

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Will Bruce Boudreau Stay Or Go?

from Iain MacIntyre of Sportsnet,

Bruce, there he goes?

In inviting Bruce Boudreau to return to the Vancouver Canucks next season for his option year, president Jim Rutherford also opened the door for the head coach to leave after a 32-15-10 turnaround that kept the National Hockey League team in the playoff race until the final week of the regular season.

With unequivocal clarity, Rutherford said he wants Boudreau to return under terms of the existing two-year agreement the coach signed with owner Francesco Aquilini in December, a few days before Rutherford was hired above Boudreau as the head of hockey operations.

There will be no extension offered Boudreau this summer, Rutherford said, which means the 67-year-old coach could explore potential offers from other teams before the June 1 deadline for him to decide on his option year with the Canucks.

The directness of Rutherford’s statement to reporters at management’s year-end press conference on Tuesday left no wiggle room. Essentially, Boudreau can take it or leave it.

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The Vancouver Canucks Still Have A Shot

from Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province,

The Canucks are alive and the magnitude of that moment Sunday in Vegas was not lost on the bench boss Monday. He knows his club has to win its three remaining games and hope a string of results elsewhere work in their favour.

Sunday helped.

“They’re a little ticked off in Vegas right now — is poor George (president of hockey operations McPhee) going to be upset now,” Boudreau chuckled Monday. “I know George and he’s a good friend, but I know how he is as far as being competitive and that was my first thought — man, he’s not going to be happy.

“We’re still in it. We’re still alive. I don’t know if stranger things have happened. The Pittsburgh Steelers made the playoffs last year and two or three teams had to beat favoured teams and win by a certain amount and they got in.

“Crazy things can happen in sports. If you give up hope, then you’re done. You always have to believe there’s a chance. I believed that when I was 38 and playing in Fort Wayne (Ind.) that I still had a chance of making the NHL.

“Francesco (Aquilini) asked me if we could make the playoffs and I said: ‘Absolutely.’ I’ve done it before and it takes a miracle in a lot of ways, but I thought if we could get on a run, we could do it.

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Playoff Chances Become Very Slim For The Vancouver Canucks

from Iain MaIntyre of Sportsnet,

The way the Vancouver Canucks started the National Hockey League season, it looked like they’d be out of the playoff race by Christmas.

Instead, they survived until the final week of the regular season. Barely and mostly in theory, but they made it.

Drained by the relentless, four-month sprint to catch up in the Western Conference standings, the Canucks lost their third straight game on Saturday, 6-3 to the Calgary Flames. The result, combined with the Dallas Stars’ 3-2 comeback win at home against the Seattle Kraken, left the Canucks six points out of the final wildcard playoff spot with three games to play.

Dallas is the only team in the race with fewer regulation wins than Vancouver, so if the Stars lose their final three games and the Canucks sweep contests against the Kraken, Los Angeles Kings and Edmonton Oilers, Vancouver could still get in.

But the Canucks also need to pass the Vegas Golden Knights, who are two points ahead and play the San Jose Sharks on Sunday. If the Knights win, the Canucks will be mathematically eliminated Tuesday when Vegas visits Dallas because someone has to win that game.

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The Vancouver Canucks Get Closer To A Playoff Spot

from Iain MacIntyre of Sportsnet,

It was March 31 when Vancouver Canucks coach Bruce Boudreau gathered players around the dressing room campfire and told them about the good old days when he was a rookie coach with the Washington Capitals and his team went 11-1 in its final 12 games to make the playoffs on the last day of the season.

It sounded like a good story and no doubt was at least a little inspiring for players.

But as a suggestion for what the sagging Canucks might be capable of accomplishing in the final month of this NHL season, it seemed completely detached from reality. The Canucks had just lost eight of their previous 11 games, apparently dooming their Stanley Cup playoff chances.

They lost 3-2 in overtime to the Vegas Golden Knights on April 3, leaving them 12 games to go. On Monday, 15 days later, the Canucks won their sixth straight, handling the Dallas Stars, one of the teams they are chasing, 6-2 at Rogers Arena.

They are five points behind Western Conference wildcard teams Dallas and Nashville, four behind the Los Angeles Kings in the race for third place in the Pacific Division. And Vancoiuver has six games to go, starting Tuesday at home against the Ottawa Senators.

After the final horn sounded Monday, the scoreboard showed a video of Lloyd Christmas from Dumb and Dumber: “So you’re telling me there is a chance. Yeah!”

The Canucks’ hope for a miracle finish feels a lot less dumb than it did two weeks ago.

continued

Game highlights are below.

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Toronto Trades Travis Dermott To Vancouver

added 4:37pm,

 

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Travis Hamonic To Ottawa

added 3:40pm,

 

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Thatcher Demko’s First Meeting With Patrick Roy

from Luke Fox of Sportsnet,

“When I was in college, it’s something I did to keep myself in a good frame of mind during the game. I used to be pretty hard on myself. In between whistles, they played tunes and dancing kept it light for me,” Demko explained on the podcast.

However, Demko stopped cutting an icy rug once Roy ripped into him during an interview with the Colorado Avalanche at the 2014 combine.

“He f—–’ laid into me for this ‘Dancing Demko’ thing, man,” Demko said. “Patty Roy, man. I grew up idolizing this guy. I can’t wait to see what this guy is like. And the first thing that comes out of his mouth is: ‘What the f— is wrong with you?’ I was like, ah, this is not going how I would hope it would go. I’m just a young, scared kid.”

According to Demko, Roy went on: “I see you out there, dancing around like you don’t give a s—. How are we supposed to draft you? Looks like you’re just here to have a good time. We need a guy who is willing to do anything to win.”

Demko concedes, to a certain extent, Roy was right. It’s one thing to dance around in college. That wouldn’t fly in the NHL.

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J.T. Miller Is A Fit For The New York Rangers

from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,

So maybe Chris Drury should have traded for J.T. Miller before the end of Sunday’s game against the Canucks while the Rangers’ president-general manager’s suite was only 20 yards away from his Vancouver counterpart, Jim Rutherford.

It wasn’t pretty at the Garden, the Blueshirts going down 5-2 in a generally uninspired and uninspiring effort from about midway through the first period to midway through the third, while Miller — an apple of the Rangers’ eye as the March 21 trade deadline approaches — set up both of his team’s two first-period goals.

The cost of doing business with Rutherford is going to be high, there is no doubt about that. The one-time and perhaps prodigal Ranger leads the Canucks in scoring with 59 points (20-39), good for tied for 10th in the league. Since arriving in Vancouver in 2019-20 by way of Tampa Bay, Miller is 15th in the NHL with 177 points (62-115) in 174 games.

He is big, is strong on the forecheck, he wins his one-on-ones, has become extremely responsible in his own end and is an elite passer. The Rangers’ kingdom for a player with those attributes to slide in on the right side with Artemi Panarin and Ryan Strome.

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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