With three games left in the regular season and the New Jersey Devils holding the second-best record in the Eastern Conference, GM Lou Lamoriello decided to fire current Boston Bruins head coach Claude Julien. We may never know why Lamoriello fired Julien, and the common speculation is that he lost the respect of his players and couldn’t set them straight despite his success. It doesn’t sound like Lamoriello wants to tell us why he fired Julien, but he did tell the Newark Star-Ledger’s Rich Chere that he does not regret firing Julien six seasons ago.
“No, because I made the decision at that time with the information I had in front of me. If you could go back and make decisions again, knowing what you know now, things would be different.
“You can’t look back. You’ve got to trust the position you’re in and the information you have. Nobody else has that information.”
It’s interesting to see that Lamoriello states that, “Nobody else has that information” (which is obviously true), and his reiteration of the word “information” (he used it three times in about five sentences) shows us that Lamoriello has no interest in telling us why he fired Julien. That’s all fine, as long as he is fine with it. The circumstances of Julien’s firing were interesting, but Julien might have been fired anyway somewhere between 2007 and 2013 if he wasn’t fired then.
Meanwhile, another touted GM in the Bruins Pete Chiarelli stuck with Julian despite plenty of clamors for his head (last season’s 3-0 implosion against the Philadelphia Flyers was the most prominent), and the Bruins have been rewarded with two Stanley Cup Finals appearances (potentially two victories) in the past three years.
Lamoriello is right for moving on, and he later has some excellent quotes praising the job Claude Julien has done as the head coach of the Boston Bruins. He’s certainly done an incredible job guiding one of the best teams in the NHL, but we may never know why exactly Lamoriello decided to can Julien.
But you know who definitely has no regrets? Julien.