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The Wraparound: Minnesota, Ottawa hire coaches; Lightning bolt to conference final

The NHL coaching carousel was in full swing this weekend.

As expected, it didn’t take Bruce Boudreau long to find a job after being ousted in Anaheim. Minnesota outbid Ottawa for Boudreau, who has won regular-season titles in eight of nine seasons with the Ducks and Capitals but has not matched that success in the playoffs. He is 409-192-80.

Boudreau was ready to join the Senators before taking the job with the Wild. Left with their second choice, the Senators hired former Tampa Bay coach Guy Boucher. He spent two-plus seasons with the Lightning, leading them to the playoffs in his first year. He quickly wore out his welcome with a hard-nosed style and took a job in Europe.

Calgary, which fired Bob Hartley, is still in the market for a coach.


Who needs Steven Stamkos?

Well, pretty much everyone, but Tampa is proving it can win without him. The Lightning bolted to the Eastern Conference final Sunday by eliminating the New York Islanders in just five games.

Stamkos, the scoring machine who will be a free agent this summer, hasn't played since March because of a blood clot. It hasn't mattered. After dumping Detroit, Tampa steamrolled the Isles and closed the series with a 4-0 win.


The Lightning will face the winner of the Pittsburgh-Washington series, and a goaltending change may be coming there. Pittsburgh holds a 3-2 series lead and could turn to Marc-Andre Fleury, who is recovered from a concussion. Rookie Matt Murray has shined in Fleury's absence.


It could be closing time Monday night in the two Western Conference series. St. Louis, which holds a 3-2 lead over Dallas, can end the series at home. San Jose, which has a 3-2 lead over Nashville, has a chance to win in Music City.

Dallas is still without injured center Tyler Seguin.

"I'm confident," Stars coach Lindy Ruff said. "These guys, they've given us everything they've had all year and we've had some tough situations, and they'll pull out of it. I think the thing I'm confident about is the way we played Saturday night gives us a heck of an opportunity to go in and win a game. Just duplicate that and get a little bit of puck luck and things may go our way."

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