Dean Evason Named Interim Head Coach

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — He worked for three general managers in four years with the Minnesota Wild, but now the team is moving on from head coach Bruce Boudreau.

On Friday, Wild General Manager Bill Guerin announced the club has relieved Boudreau of his coaching duties. Dean Evason, who was the assistant coach, is now the interim head coach.

“I would like to thank Bruce for his hard work and commitment to the Minnesota Wild during his tenure with the organization and wish him and his family the best in the future,” Guerin said.

Boudreau went 158-110-35 (.579) in three-plus seasons with the Wild. The team lost to the Rangers Thursday night after going into the third period with a two-goal lead.

The shock was that it came during the season and not after. In this case, this was a business decision, but the players can’t help but feel responsible for this — even though the team’s been playing well, they have remained inconsistent.

“You kind of put a lot of blame on yourself,” Alex Stalock said. “Man, it’s a tough business and sometimes tough things happen.”

As hard as this is on the players, they know this part of raising the team’s standards.

Earlier in the week, the team traded arguably its best player, Jason Zucker, to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Pittsburgh sent forward Alex Galchenyuk, defenseman prospect Calen Addison and a conditional 2020 first-round draft pick to the Wild in exchange for Zucker.

“This week’s been a lot of shakeups with the trade and now Bruce as well,” Jared Spurgeon said. “Last night, we wanted to win that game, and it would be a different story if we did, I think.”

Guerin said he’s still expecting the Wild to make a strong push for the postseason.

“I can promise you this: If there is quit, there will be more trades,” Guerin said to the Associated Press. “So I wholeheartedly expect this team to compete for a playoff spot. We’re right there, and if there’s any signs of anybody taking their foot off the gas, that will be an indication.”

There’s still a level of confidence that this team can make the playoffs. They have everything that they need to get it done, WCCO’s Norman Seawright said.