NHL rumors: Bruins down to three top candidates for head coach job

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These three coaches are top candidates for Bruins' vacant job, per report originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The Boston Bruins still don't have a head coach despite firing Bruce Cassidy almost a month ago.

However, it sounds like the coaching search is narrowing a bit.

The Athletic's Fluto Shinzawa reported Thursday that Greg Cronin, an Arlington, Mass., native who is the Colorado Eagles (AHL) head coach, is no longer a candidate for the Bruins' job.

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Shinzawa also reported the top candidates remaining for the position: "With Cronin out of the running, the source identified Jay Leach, Jim Montgomery and David Quinn as the top candidates for the position. All have been interviewed at least once."

Bruins general manager Don Sweeney said a few weeks ago that prior head coaching experience at the NHL level is not a firm requirement for Boston's next bench boss.

"I’m certainly going to be open-minded," Sweeney noted on June 7. "I’m going to cast the net a little wider. I don’t think it’s an absolute prerequisite."

That said, of the three candidates named above, both Quinn (Rangers) and Montgomery (Stars) have served as head coaches of NHL teams. Leach was the head coach of the AHL's Providence Bruins for four seasons from 2017-18 through 2020-21.

The Bruins are one of three teams still without a head coach. The Detroit Red Wings and Winnipeg Jets are the others.

The 2022 NHL Draft begins next Thursday, July 7. Free agency begins July 13.