The COVID announcements are coming fast and furious this morning. After the Edmonton Oilers canceled practice for precautionary reasons, the Boston Bruins report that head coach Bruce Cassidy has entered the protocol. The Bruins are scheduled to take on the Detroit Red Wings this evening. Don Sweeney explained that Cassidy does have mild symptoms and Joe Sacco will take over primary coaching duties in his absence.
It’s certainly not an ideal time for Cassidy to be put in isolation, as the Bruins are win-starved lately and actually sit behind the Red Wings in the standings (though they’ve played four fewer games). Since the head coach has tested positive and is experiencing symptoms, he’ll be held away from the team for a minimum of ten days. That could mean five games without their bench boss, right as the Bruins’ schedule starts to ramp up after a slow first two months.
Remember the team is also without Brad Marchand after he was issued a three-game suspension, meaning the Bruins will be short-handed as they try to leapfrog Detroit and climb back up the Atlantic Division standings. Jake DeBrusk, who is currently hoping for a trade out of town, was at the morning skate and on the fourth line with Erik Haula and Curtis Lazar. The team actually doesn’t currently have the ability to recall anyone from the Providence Bruins, as that team is in their own COVID lockdown after positive cases reached double digits.
As with any COVID designation, but especially that of older coaches and executives, the focus obviously lies on Cassidy’s health. The hockey world hopes the 56-year-old comes through without any serious symptoms and is back on the bench in no time.