Guy Boucher not seeking 'revenge' against Lightning
Guy Boucher said he's asked often, both by media members and people in the street, whether he's circled Saturday's game against the Lightning on his calendar.
Boucher, fired by Tampa Bay in 2013 after four seasons as head coach, is in his first year with Ottawa.
The simple answer? Not at all.
"Maybe it's the distance of the years, I'm very calm and almost cold about it," Boucher said Friday in a news conference in Ottawa. "I don't know how to explain it. It's been too long. I guess if it was last year, or two months ago, and it was all the people I worked with, all the players I had, but I only coached two players. That's it."
The only two Lightning players who have played for Boucher are captain Steven Stamkos and defenseman Victor Hedman. Boucher took over in 2010-11, GM Steve Yzerman's first head coaching hire. And the Lightning reached Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final in 2011, losing to eventual Stanley Cup champion Boston. Boucher was 97-78-20 overall.
Boucher said he has spoken with Yzerman "many, many times," the two maintaining a good relationship. Coach Jon Cooper took over for Boucher and has led the Lightning to three consecutive playoff appearances, including a trip to the Stanley Cup Final in 2015 and the Eastern Conference Final last season.
Boucher spent the last three seasons coaching in Switzerland for Bern SC, giving him more distance from his time in Tampa Bay.
"That's why I'd love to say, 'Oh my goodness, it's a revenge day,' and the whole big story so you can get a great story," Boucher said. "But for me, I'm so grateful... Steve Yzerman and Mr. Vinik, Julien (BriseBois), I owe them a lot. As a family we had four years down there, a really good life. I was very fortunate he gave me the reins of an NHL team.
"The animosity I guess people would be looking for, there's none of it."