Unlike most coaches who are fired, Bruce Boudreau left very few enemies in the Capitals locker room and that was evident by players' reactions to their old coach getting hired by the Anaheim Ducks less than three days after being relieved of his duties in Washington.
Its good for him, said Capitals center Brooks Laich. He did a lot around here and we knew hed land on his feet. I think hes going into a good situation, actually. Anaheim has a good team and hell be excellent for them.
Boudreau was out of work less than 12 hours before Ducks general manager Bob Murray reached out to him and asked if hed be interested in replacing Randy Carlyle. Boudreau hopped on a plane Wednesday and was introduced as head coach of the Ducks on Thursday.
Bob Woods, who was fired by the Capitals as an assistant coach late Tuesday night, is expected to be named Boudreaus assistant.
Capitals assistant coach Dean Evason, who was retained by the Caps in the coaching shuffle, said hes happy for Boudreau and Woods.
As a coach, you know youre going to get fired, Evason said. Its inevitable. It just happens. You feel for the people, for Bruce and Bob, but theyre probably pretty happy today with where theyre going.
Its difficult sometimes because there are people involved, but at the end of the day, you believe good people will get another opportunity and certainly they did.
Caps forward Jason Chimera and goaltender Tomas Vokoun both said they were not surprised to see Boudreau return to the NHL so quickly and Alex Ovechkin agreed.
Its the NHL; its a business, Ovechkin said. (The Ducks) were struggling as well, (so) they just made a decision. Hes a great guy, of course; a great coach. I dont think its going to be a problem for him and for that team to connect with each other.