Boston Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli has been working to retain the core of the team that won the Stanley Cup in 2011. That includes keeping Claude Julien behind the bench.
He'll be there for a while longer after Chiarelli announced Tuesday that Julien had received a multiyear contract extension. He was entering the last of a three-year deal that was scheduled to run out after the 2012-13 season.
Chiarelli wouldn't say how long the contract runs, but did say it was important to keep the 52-year-old Julien in charge.
"When we made the commitment to try and keep the core of this team together following our Cup win, we embarked on signing some key players before free agency," Chiarelli said during a news conference at TD Garden. "We feel we've come a long way toward keeping the critical mass together for this team, because we feel it's a strong team and continues to be a strong team. One of the core components in this critical mass is sitting beside me, our coach, Claude Julien."
"I remain hungry. I remain dedicated to understanding that the expectations here in Boston are always very high, and I love that kind of standard because that's what makes you a better coach, that's what makes you a better team, and I intend on making that happen and continue to make that happen as we move forward here." -- Claude Julien
Julien has spent the past five seasons behind the Bruins' bench, leading the team to the playoffs each time and to the franchise's first Stanley Cup since 1972 in June 2011. The Bruins won their Northeast Division title under Julien last season but were upset by Washington in the opening round of the playoffs.
Julien, who has a 228-132-50 record in 410 games in Boston after stints with Montreal and New Jersey, said he was delighted to know he'll be coach for several more seasons.
"I love the organization, I love the city, I think my family is extremely happy here, so I couldn't ask for a better situation for myself personally," Julien said. "Having said that, I think the one thing I said when I first came here, is my goal was to try and win a Stanley Cup here in Boston, and we've accomplished that. Now my goal is to win another Cup with this Boston franchise.
"I remain hungry. I remain dedicated to understanding that the expectations here in Boston are always very high, and I love that kind of standard because that's what makes you a better coach, that's what makes you a better team, and I intend on making that happen and continue to make that happen as we move forward here."
Julien and Chiarelli stressed during the news conference that Julien has been able to adapt during his time in Boston, a stretch in which the Bruins have become one of the NHL's elite teams.
"Over his tenure here, he's shown the ability to adapt. He's had a very, very disciplined team -- which is a testament to his coaching," Chiarelli said. "At the same time, it is a tough team. That's a difficult balance to maintain and he's been able to do that with success.
"We have the ability to score and to defend. All these areas, I'm very happy with. Again, it's a testament to Claude and his ability to adapt and change. When he sees the game trending in certain ways, we have discussions over the course of the year and over the summer, and he's able to adapt. I think that's a great attribute of Claude."
Julien added, "You evolve every year as a coach. Most of the guys who know it all are retired."