Play­offs mean Boudreau’s back with yet an­other team

The Washington Times Daily - - SPORTS -

ST. PAUL, MINN. | An­other pros­per­ous NHL reg­u­lar sea­son has ended for for­mer Wash­ing­ton Cap­i­tals coach Bruce Boudreau. Now with Min­nesota, and in his ninth trip to the play­offs, comes the hard part.

No head coach in the his­tory of the league who has lasted more than three years has a bet­ter reg­u­lar sea­son points per­cent­age than Boudreau with his .658 mark from 458 wins, 217 reg­u­la­tion losses and 88 over­time or shootout losses. Since he landed his first such NHL job early in the 2007-08 sea­son with Wash­ing­ton, Boudreau has been to the play­offs ev­ery year but one. That was 2011-12, af­ter he was hired by Ana­heim on the heels of his fir­ing by the Cap­i­tals.

“He’s a great coach. There’s no other way to put it,” Cap­i­tals de­fense­man Karl Alzner said. “He knows hockey. He knows how to get guys to work hard.”

Yes, even in those ill-fated Game 7s, he’s just 1-7 — part of a lack­lus­ter play­off record that hangs over any dis­cus­sion of Boudreau.

The Min­nesota Wild, af­ter just seven months of play­ing for him, are de­ter­mined to rem­edy that.

“You can’t sit there and say that a guy can’t win in play­offs. He’s coach­ing the team the same way,” goalie De­van Dub­nyk said. “We’re go­ing to try our best not to think about that and to fo­cus on just win­ning.”

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