Former Blackhawk Bruce Cassidy named Bruins interim coach

The 1983 first-round pick lands his second NHL head coaching job.

Former Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Bruce Cassidy was named the interim head coach of the Boston Bruins after Claude Julien was fired Tuesday.

Cassidy, 51, played parts of six seasons with Chicago, who selected him with the No. 18 overall pick in the 1983 NHL Draft. He bounced around the minor leagues for the most part, but did manage to collect 17 points (four goals, 13 assists) in 36 career NHL games.

Cassidy does have NHL head coaching experience, leading the Washington Capitals to the Stanley Cup Playoffs in his only full season as coach in 2002-03. Washington finished 29-29-8-6 and lost to Tampa Bay in the Eastern Conference quarterfinals in six games.

In 2004, Cassidy returned to Chicago as an assistant to head coach Trent Yawney. With the NHL lockout canceling the 2004-05 season, Cassidy was behind Chicago’s bench for only the 2005-06 season. The Hawks finished 26-43-13 and failed to qualify for the playoffs.

Cassidy’s contract was not renewed and he took a job with the Kingston Frontenacs of the Ontario Hockey League. After being fired following a rough start to his second season in Kingston, he took the assistant job with the Bruins’ AHL club in Providence where he was promoted to head coach in 2012. Four years later, the Bruins named him an assistant coach in Boston.

For more on Cassidy and the fallout from Julien’s firing, visit SB Nation’s Boston Bruins site Stanley Cup of Chowder.