ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) - Washington Capitals general manager George McPhee says he fired Bruce Boudreau because "players were no longer responding" to the coach.
McPhee says Monday's switch to former Capitals captain Dale Hunter was needed because Boudreau "pushed every button he could" but the team has lost six of its last eight games.
Boudreau won 200 games faster than any coach in modern NHL history but stumbled regularly in the playoffs despite a talent-laden lineup featuring two-time league MVP Alex Ovechkin.
Hired four years ago on Thanksgiving Day, Boudreau went 201-88-40 in the regular season but 17-20 in the playoffs. This season he tried emphasizing accountability and benching star players, including team captain Ovechkin.