Claude Julien’s Legacy in Boston
Last year Claude Julien’s ten year run as the Bruins’ head coach ended midseason. The team was struggling and looking like they would miss the playoffs for the third straight year. Julien’s tenure in Boston didn’t end well. Since then as the Canadiens’ coach he hasn’t had much success against his former team. This year the Bruins won all three games against their arch rivals and former coach. Even though Julien’s tenure ended unsuccessfully he still had a run of success in Boston that won’t be seen for some time.
Photo Credit: Kevin Paul Dupont
During his ten years in Boston Julien won 419 games while losing only 246. Julien has the most wins as a coach in Bruins history. In ten years his teams made the playoffs seven times. He guided the Bruins to the Stanley Cup twice, winning it all in 2011. Before Julien came to Boston the Bruins were struggling. His hiring saw a new era for the Bruins in which expectations were raised. Before Julien came to Boston the Bruins missed the playoffs for two straight years. Once Julien came aboard the Bruins didn’t miss the playoffs until the 2014 season.
Photo Credit: Kevin Harriman
Even though Julien was extremely successful in Boston he had his faults. Young players tended to struggle under him. Julien emphasized defense over offense unlike current Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy. Julien preferred the dump and chase method while Cassidy encourages his forwards and defenseman to be aggressive. As the NHL has become faster paced Julien attempted to combine his methods with the new style of play. He was unsuccessful and as a result he faced a lot of criticism from Bruins fans. As Julien and the Bruins struggled it became clear a move needed to be made.
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Julien’s tenure in Boston didn’t end as it started. That does not change the success he had and how he changed the franchise. From 2010-2013 the Bruins were one of the best teams in the NHL. They appeared ready for multiple championship runs under Julien but fell short. That does not change the success Julien had in Boston and how he changed the expectations of the franchise