This post is part of Wild Day on PHT…
Since he became an NHL head coach in 2007-08, Bruce Boudreau has had plenty of regular season success. The former coach of the Capitals and Ducks has an impressive record of 409-192-80.
During his nine years behind the bench in Washington and Anaheim, Boudreau’s teams have won 46 games or more six times. Unfortunately for Boudreau, that hasn’t translated into any championships.
Not only is Boudreau still searching for his first Stanley Cup title, he’s also searching for his first conference championship.
Now in Minnesota, Boudreau knows that time is of the essence. The 61-year-old, who’s now on his third team, won’t have many more cracks at the cup.
“I think they’re a really good team, and I think they can win,” Boudreau said in May, per NHL.com. “At my age, I think they can win in the next two years. I know they’re in the toughest division in hockey, which in itself is a great challenge. But I think they can win and I’m hoping I can be a little bit of a help and assistance there.”
Two years might be all the Wild have to be legitimate cup contenders. With Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu and Ryan Suter all over 30, it appears as though the window for Minnesota to hoist Lord Stanley is closing.
With the lack of consistency they showed in 2015-16, some might even believe that the team’s time has come and gone already. But if Boudreau can bring that winning mentality he had in Washington and Anaheim, anything is possible come playoff time.
To get the Wild back on track, Boudreau will need to find a way to get production from players that have struggled of late. Eric Staal, Chris Stewart, Jason Pominville, Jason Zucker and Jonas Brodin will need to deliver more than they did last season for the Wild to be serious contenders.
“I hope I can bring a Stanley Cup to this state,” Boudreau told NHL.com. “It’s something that I’ve looked forward to, for a hockey market like this, to come in with, I think, a team that has always been a tough opponent for any team that I’ve ever coached. Going forward I think we’re going to be even better.”