Erik Karlsson is ‘so excited’ about the hiring of Guy Boucher

Associated Press

As a head coach, having star players buy into your system is important. In Ottawa, it appears as though Guy Boucher is on his way to doing just that.

The Sens new head coach got a chance to chat with All-Star defenseman Erik Karlsson about three weeks ago, and the captain likes what he’s hearing.

“We had a lengthy meeting about a number of things,” Karlsson said, per the Ottawa Sun. “It was good. It was good to finally see him, and hear his thoughts, and maybe that’s why I’m so excited right now.

“I know a lot of players that have played for him in the past and I’ve heard a lot of good things about him. From the type of person that he is, to the type of coach and what he believes in.”

Before he left to be a head coach in Switzerland, Boucher had the reputation of being very intense (sometimes too intense). But Karlsson doesn’t see that as problem. On the contrary, he believes the Sens need someone with some fire.

“He’s a very passionate and intense guy which I think, for the type of team that we have, is going to fit very good. He’s a young mind, we have a younger team and I think what he brings to the table and the way that he believes things work is going to match up with everything that we have in the room.”

One of the areas that Boucher, Karlsson and assistant coach Marc Crawford will have to work on is the power play. The Senators were the 26th ranked team on the man-advantage at 15.8 percent in 2015-16.

“I think (they’ll) do a good job in really specializing in special teams,” added Karlsson. “We have a good group of guys to be successful in the power play and penalty killing. That’s something that we’re going to try to figure out right away and that’s going to be no issue because I know he’s a had lot of success previously.”

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