Breaking news Tuesday as the Montreal Canadiens have relieved head coach Michel Therrien of his coaching duties and have hired former Boston Bruins head coach Claude Julien to fill in. The news came as shocking to many, with no prior rumors or tips of this move being made earlier.
Marc Bergevin on hiring Claude Julien: "Today we hired the best available coach, and one of the league's best."
Michel Therrien was on the hot seat as of late, with the Habs losing ten of their past thirteen games, the blame needed to go somewhere. After such a great start to the year, the Canadiens have died down a bit recently. They still hold terrific playoff ground (first place in the Atlantic Division), but have fallen from first place in the National Hockey League to a current eighth place. Therrien, who is now one of the bigger names on the available coaches list, has gone 406-303-23-82 in his career as an NHL head coach. He served as coach of the Habs from 2000-2003, was fired and then re-hired as coach in 2012. He has led Montreal to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2014, where the team lost to the New York Rangers. In his career with the Canadiens, Therrien has gone 271-198-50-23.
Claude Julien will be stepping in as the new head coach of the club. Julien was fired from the Bruins last week. He has a record of 419-246-94 behind the Bruins bench, having won the Stanley Cup in 2011. He has coaches a total of 997 NHL games, three away from hitting the milestone of 1,000,one that he will be able to resume Friday, when the team’s bye-week ends. This is not Julien’s first time coaching Montreal, for he was the team’s coach from 2003-2006.
Julien has his work cut out for him in a city that is passionate about the game of hockey. All eyes are on him to impress and improve the Canadiens recent slump. Beginning Friday, he will be back behind the bench with a new team, looking to capture another Stanley Cup victory with a team that has all of the weapons to do just that.
DETROIT, MI – JANUARY 18: Boston Bruins head coach Claude Julien looks at his bench following a Detroit Red Wings goal during the NHL hockey game between the Boston Bruins and Detroit Red Wings on January 18, 2017, at Comerica Park in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Steven King/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)