Breaking: Boudreau Out, Hunter In
Washington Capitals have replaced Bruce Boudreau as their head coach with Dale Hunter.
The Washington Capitals general manager George McPhee announced this morning that former Capital Dale Hunter will replace Bruce Boudreau.
This replacement comes after two weekend losses, the first at home Friday with a 6-3 loss to the New York Rangers, and again on Saturday with a 5-1 loss to the Buffalo Sabres. The Capitals have a record of 12-9-1 this season.
Boudreau was named interim coach of the Capitals in November 2007 and received the permanent position in December of that same year.
Hunter, who will make his Capitals coaching debut tomorrow at home against the St. Louis Blues, is one of just four former Capitals to have his number retired. He played 19 seasons in the NHL, including playing for the Capitals from 1988-1999. He served as the Capitals captain during the 1994-1995 season.
"Hunter is the only player in NHL history to record more than 1,000 points and 3,000 penalty minutes. He ranks second in NHL history in penalty minutes, 53rd in assists and 73rd all-time in points and his 186 playoff games rank tied for 23rd all-time," according to a press release from the Capitals.
Read the full release below and stay tuned to Ballston Patch as we learn more about this developing story.
Capitals Name Dale Hunter Head Coach
Former Caps Captain is One of Four Players to have his Number Retired by the Capitals
"ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals have named Dale Hunter the team’s head coach, replacing Bruce Boudreau, vice president and general manager George McPhee announced today.
Hunter, 51, becomes the 15th coach in Washington Capitals history and will make his debut behind the bench tomorrow as the Capitals host the St. Louis Blues at Verizon Center.
Hunter helped the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) win their first Memorial Cup Championship in 2004-05 and is the fastest head coach in OHL history to record 300 and 400 career wins. The Petrolia, Ont., native owns the highest winning percentage in league history with a record of 451-189-23-24 (.691) in his 11 seasons behind the bench for London and was the 2003-04 winner of the Brian Kilrea Canadian Hockey League (CHL) Coach of the Year.
Hunter played 19 seasons in the NHL from 1980-99, appearing in 1,407 games and collecting 1,020 points (323 goals, 697 assists) along with 3,565 penalty minutes with Quebec, Washington and Colorado.
Hunter is one of just four players to have their numbers retired by the Washington Capitals as his No. 32 was retired by the team on March 11, 2000. Hunter captained the Capitals from the 1994-95 season until the 1998-99 season and was named to the NHL All-Star Team in 1997. He played in 872 games for the Capitals from 1987-99 and compiled 556 points (181 goals, 375 goals) and 2,003 penalty minutes. Hunter ranks first all-time in Capitals’ history in penalty minutes, fourth in games played, tied for ninth in goals and third in assists. His 100 career playoff games with the Capitals rank tied for first in team history while his 72 points and 47 assists both lead the franchise.
Hunter is the only player in NHL history to record more than 1,000 points and 3,000 penalty minutes. He ranks second in NHL history in penalty minutes, 53rd in assists and 73rd all-time in points and his 186 playoff games rank tied for 23rd all-time. He was originally drafted by the Quebec Nordiques in the second round (41st overall) of the 1979 NHL Entry Draft.
This season the Knights lead the OHL with a 20-5-0-1 record and 41 points. Hunter earned his 450th career win on Saturday, Nov. 26 in a 7-2 win over Erie. The Knights are currently the top-ranked team in the CHL and have been ranked No. 1 for seven of the 10 weeks this season and each of the past six weeks (CHL’s Top 10 teams are selected by a panel of National Hockey League scouts). During his time in London, Hunter has coached current Capitals defensemen John Carlson and Dennis Wideman and has worked with numerous other current NHL players such as Rick Nash, Corey Perry, Patrick Kane and John Tavares.
London has won 50 or more games three times and finished first in the OHL four times under Hunter, including a CHL record-setting season in 2004-05 when the Knights finished with a record of 59-7-2-0 and went 20-2-0-0 in the playoffs on the way to the first Memorial Cup championship in London history."