Bruce Boudreau becomes second-fastest coach in NHL history to win 600 games

Vancouver Canucks head coach Bruce Boudreau won his 600th career game in the NHL Thursday when his Canucks team took down the Seattle Kraken 5-4. Boudreau had to wait longer than he would have wanted for the milestone as Vancouver dropped their first seven games of the season.

Still, the former Washington Capitals bench boss reached the 600-win mark the second-fastest of any head coach in NHL history.

Boudreau is one of just six active head coaches, including the Capitals’ Peter Laviolette, to have 600 career wins. His .633 career points percentage is also the second-highest in NHL history among coaches with 600-plus wins behind only Scotty Bowman at .657.

“It hasn’t set in yet, pretty exhausting game,” Boudreau told reporters after the victory. “I diagrammed it about eight games ago. Honest to god, I haven’t been thinking about that since about the third game. I just wanted to get the win for the guys and let them feel better. Hopefully, this little streak doesn’t happen again in the negative fashion.”

Offseason free agent acquisition Ilya Mikheyev got on the board for the first two times in a Canucks sweater in the victory. Vancouver had a 5-3 lead with just 1:25 left in the third period but were given a scare as Jordan Eberle scored for the Kraken with 30 seconds remaining.

“If there’s one guy that deserves it, it’s him,” captain Bo Horvat said. “He’s had a heck of a coaching career. We made it hard on him at the beginning of the season. It was still a nail-biter to the end for him, I’m sure he was sweating behind the bench. It really feels good to get him that one.”

Boudreau has had quite the coaching journey. His first gig behind a bench came in the Colonial Hockey League with the Muskegon Fury back in 1992. After that, he spent time with the Fort Wayne Komets (IHL), San Francisco Spiders (IHL), Mississippi Sea Wolves (ECHL), Lowell Lock Monsters (AHL), and Manchester Monarchs (AHL) before eventually arriving in Hershey to coach the Bears.

One Calder Cup championship and three total seasons in Hershey later, he was promoted to the Capitals and won 201 games. Bruce helped usher in both the Young Guns and Rock the Red eras. Since his eventual departure from DC, he has behind the bench of the Anaheim Ducks, Minnesota Wild, and now the Canucks.

Congrats on an already legendary career and accomplishment, Bruce!

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