Bruce Boudreau stated he by no means thought-about quitting as coach of the Vancouver Canucks.
“I might’ve stated, ‘Completely not. You are going to have to pull me out,’” Boudreau stated on SiriusXM on Monday, at some point after he was fired by Vancouver and changed with Rick Tocchet.
“You need me out, get me out however I am not going to stop and I am not going to ever hand over as a result of in case you do this, you are quitting on the gamers and my entire factor with the crew all yr was, we by no means stop. We by no means stop. We’ve to maintain going. So, what sort of message would I be sending if I used to be the one which stop? So, that wasn’t going to occur.”
Boudreau, who turned 68 on Jan. 9, was employed by the Canucks to interchange Travis Inexperienced on Dec. 5, 2021. At the moment, the Canucks have been final within the Pacific Division with an 8-15-2 report. After Boudreau took over, the Canucks have been 32-15-10, lacking the Stanley Cup Playoffs by two factors. Vancouver introduced Might 13 Boudreau would return as coach.
However the Canucks began slowly, 0-5-2 of their first seven video games, and issues by no means received a lot better. Six days earlier than Boudreau was fired, crew president Jim Rutherford stated in a information convention he’d already had conversations with doable replacements.
Requested Monday about how issues have been dealt with and his relationship with Rutherford and normal supervisor Patrik Allvin, Boudreau did not need to discuss it.
“Sooner or later, perhaps I am going to really feel compelled to say some issues,” Boudreau stated. “However proper now, I am going to go away that stuff non-public, and we’ll transfer on to a different subject.”
Earlier than back-to-back house video games in opposition to the Colorado Avalanche and Edmonton Oilers on Friday and Saturday, Boudreau received emotional, talking as if he knew he was teaching his closing video games.
At every sport in Vancouver, he was serenaded with “Bruce, there it’s” from followers at Rogers Place. Earlier than leaving the bench Saturday, he gave a thank-you wave to the followers.
“It was fairly overwhelming,” he stated. “I texted my spouse earlier than the sport and I stated, ‘I believe that is going to be a tricky sport,’ and that stuff on the finish, it was fairly loopy. I might by no means have anticipated it and once I stood on the bench on the finish, trying on the crowd and considering is-this-the-end-type factor, that is when it kind of caught as much as me.
“However the followers have been nice. They’re very, very passionate in Vancouver. If this crew may ever get a winner, you’d need to be right here as a result of it is loud. It is most likely similar to if Toronto wins that first spherical of the playoffs this yr, the second and the third spherical, if that is the place it goes, that place goes to be unbelievable.”
The Canucks (18-25-3) have misplaced 10 of their previous 12 video games and are sixth within the eight-team Pacific, 14 factors behind the Avalanche for the second wild card into the playoffs from the Western Convention. They’re thirty first within the NHL in objectives in opposition to per sport (3.96) and final on the penalty kill (65.9 p.c).
Vancouver has been with out goalie Thatcher Demko due to a lower-body damage since Dec. 1.
“Whether or not you are a good crew or a nasty crew, goaltending is every thing in hockey. When you have it, then it makes you look quite a bit higher and if you do not have it, it makes you look quite a bit worse,” Boudreau stated. “‘Thatch’ by his personal recollection will let you know he struggled early on after which he received damage for the final 31 video games.”
Boudreau, who has an NHL profession report of 617-342-128 within the 1,087 regular-season video games with the Canucks, Minnesota Wild, Anaheim Geese and Washington Capitals, stated he hasn’t soured on teaching.
“I would not sway from it. I may’ve gone again to work yesterday,” Boudreau stated.
He additionally stated he has no regrets from his time in Vancouver.
“I do not assume I might’ve executed an terrible lot completely different proper now,” he stated. “I went with the identical philosophy and theories that I’ve all the time had as a coach, and it appeared to work. It did not appear to me there was any want to alter systems-wise, as a result of we nonetheless had the identical core as we had the yr earlier than.
“We ended up altering it partial approach via [the season] and we modified our impartial zone and penalty killing. When issues aren’t working you modify issues. Initially of the season and thru the summer time, I did not assume there was any want to alter something. I used to be simply pumped as much as play as most groups are.
“It is simply one thing that did not work out and that is an unlucky factor as a result of it wasn’t via lack of effort from anyone. As a matter of reality, if something, we labored more durable as coaches, we labored more durable as gamers, to get and attempt to make this factor work.”