Ex-Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy brings ‘big, nice shiny ring' back to Boston

Ex-Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy brings ‘big, nice shiny ring' back to Boston originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The last time Bruce Cassidy coached at TD Garden in December of 2022, he was making his much-anticipated return to Boston after being fired as Bruins head coach in June of that year.

It didn't take long for Cassidy to find a new job following his exit from Boston. The Vegas Golden Knights hired him as their head coach, and he led the franchise to its first Stanley Cup title during his debut season.

The Golden Knights are back in town for a showdown with the Bruins on Thursday night. Last year's meeting was full of emotion. This year's vibe is a little more subdued. That's what happens when you win a Stanley Cup ring.

“I think last year there was the unknown, didn’t know what would happen — you come back in here, you get let go. You don’t know if you’re gonna get booed out of the building or (get) a nice hand," Cassidy told reporters Thursday morning.

“So anyway, we got that over with. It’s nice to come back with a big, nice shiny ring on your finger, too — always a good visit with that.”

Cassidy grew up a Bruins fan in Ottawa and spent 14 years in the organization, including the last six as Boston's head coach. He helped lead the Bruins to the 2019 Stanley Cup Final, where they lost in Game 7 to the St. Louis Blues on home ice. It was the closest Cassidy got to winning a title with the B's.

“Well, I wanted to win one here, trust me -- more than anybody,” Cassidy said. “Didn’t work out. So that’s our ultimate goal. I think every coach wants to win. So it’s just a nice feeling to be able to get it accomplished."

The Golden Knights enter Thursday in second place in the Pacific Division with a 33-19-7 record, which is pretty good considering all of the games some of their top players, including Mark Stone and Jack Eichel, have missed due to injuries.