Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy deserves a little more respect and credit than what he’s been given so far this season.
Maybe not from Bruins fans, but from the National Hockey Writers Association. They handed out their mid-season awards recently and even though there is no actual hardware, they have no actual clue as to what they’re doing when it comes to the head coach situation.
Cassidy was a glaring snub for the Jack Adams Award otherwise known as the Coach of the Year Award.
I won’t argue against the winner because Vegas Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallant most certainly deserves it at the midpoint in the season. What he’s doing with his expansion team is incredible and exceeding everyone’s expectations.
But what I will argue is that Cassidy isn’t second let alone even on the list of candidates. Listen, I know these awards mean nothing and there’s nothing given out for them – but to not even have Cassidy in the conversation is asinine.
He has without a doubt turned this Bruins team around after the firing of Claude Julien last year. The team is in second place in the Atlantic Division with a 31-11-8 record and 70 points – just five points behind the first-place Tampa Bay Lightning.
Boston had an 18-game point-streak before they lost in regulation last week, but Tuukka Rask has a point in 20-straight games he’s started.
This entire team is clicking – the youth, the veterans, the offense, the defense – everyone is on the same page.
Cassidy has turned this team into a team that no longer looks like they’d struggle just to capture a playoff spot. He’s made the B’s enjoyable and watchable when at the beginning of the season they were hard to watch and extremely frustrating on the ice and were likely, at best, a Wild Card team.
The team dealt with injuries, sluggish play and horrible goaltending from Rask, but somehow, that all seems like a distant memory now because of how well the black and gold are playing. They’ve won tough games. They’ve battled the entire 60 minutes of the game. They even beat their rival, the Montreal Canadiens three-consecutive times in eight days.
At the beginning of the season, it looked as if this was going to be a long, dreadful 82 games. But once the calendar changed over to December, it’s as if the B’s were a whole new team and the first two months of the season were just a trial run.
Whatever Cassidy is doing is working heavily in his favor – and he’s made this team worth talking about.
Written By: Lauren Campbell (@lalalaLaurrrren)