We’ll get to hockey matters in time, but first, let’s get to know the man himself, new Golden Knights head coach Bruce Cassidy.
Here is a link to his Wikipedia page. That should cover pretty much his entire playing and coaching career. Now on to the lesser known things.
Cassidy was cut from a Midget A team at age 15, three years before being selected in the 1st round of the NHL Draft
The B team he was placed on ended up beating the A team in a tournament later that season. It was at this tournament that NHL scouts first really noticed him and it launched his playing and, ultimately, coaching career.
Source: The Athletics
**The story linked above details this nugget and more about his coaching career. Highly recommended reading.**
Bruce is a baseball guy
Like many kids who become professional athletes, Cassidy wasn’t just good at one sport. He grew up playing baseball as well as hockey and excelled at both. His father, Leonard, coached him in baseball when he played and now he is the 1st base coach for his son, Cole’s team.
Cassidy says he’s being aggressive sending out baserunners.
I’m 36 for 36 on stolen bases this year. -Cassidy at NHL Network
Cassidy is close to Bill Belichick
The day after Cassidy was fired from the Bruins, Belichick opened his press conference by talking about Bruce.
Sorry to see what happened with Bruce yesterday. I really enjoyed my relationship with him and will always support the Bruins, but he was a good friend and someone I had a great relationship with. -Belichick
Belichick is a regular at Bruins games and waved the banner before a Stanley Cup Finals game in 2019. Cassidy says the Patriots head coach came to the game early so the two could talk.
Source: Mass Live
Cassidy often calls the analytics service “nerds”
As a coach, he is definitely interested in statistics and trends. He says he’s careful about what he throws at players, but he brings it in as a tool to help his team.
He called his analytics service ‘good nerds’ when asked about them earlier this year and referred to ‘new statistical categories that nerds have invented’ when discussing the candidacy Selke by Patrice Bergeron.
It’s probably good that he gets along with the nerds, because one of his strongest selling points as a coach is how dominating his teams have been in expected goals against over the past five seasons.
Cassidy ‘crashed’ her US citizenship test
Having lived in the United States for much of her adult life, Cassidy began the naturalization process a few years ago. At the end of 2020, he officially became an American citizen.
They gave me a list of 100 questions. I’m going to guess 80 that I already knew. I pay attention to the history, politics, geography of the United States. I have been here a long time. When the test came, I passed. They asked me six questions, I understood them well, so they said “You succeeded”. I succeeded. I studied hard. Crushed. -Cassidy at the Boston Globe
Source: Boston Globe