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Lightning ousts Boucher as coach

The SportsXchange

The Tampa Bay Lightning fired coach Guy Boucher after a 5-3 loss to the Ottawa Senators on Saturday night, the team announced Sunday.

Assistants Martin Raymond and Dan Lacroix will serve as coaches for Sunday night's game against the Winnipeg Jets.

With a 13-17-1 record, the Lightning are next to last in the Eastern Conference standings after starting the lockout-shortened season 6-1. Tampa Bay has lost six of its past 10 games.

"Guy has poured his heart and soul into the Lightning organization for these past three years and we appreciate all the work he has done," general manager Steve Yzerman said in a statement. "But ultimately I am not satisfied with the direction we are heading and I believe making a change today is in the best interest of our franchise."

After Yzerman hired Boucher in 2010, the coach led the Lightning to the Eastern Conference finals in 2011. But Tampa Bay didn't make the playoffs last season and isn't likely to reach the postseason again this year.

Possible replacements for Boucher are Lindy Ruff, who was fired in February by the Buffalo Sabres, and Jon Cooper, the coach of the Lightning's American Hockey League team, reported.

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