On Monday morning, two NHL coaches awoke to phone calls they never wanted to receive.
For Bruce Boudreau, it was Capitals general manager George McPhee. For Paul Maurice, Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford was the voice on the other end. The message was the same: Your services are no longer needed behind the bench.
With two Southeast Division head coaches losing their jobs, Nov. 28 quickly earned the media nickname of "Black Monday."
Though Boudreau and Maurice were fired for similar reasons, as their respective teams were not winning, the build-ups to the two firings were very different.
Boudreau's Capitals started off the 2011-12 season with a bang by winning their first seven games -- a franchise record for best start to a season. They were undefeated at home through early November.
Then, slowly, the team began to collapse. In their last 15 games, they are 5-9-1. They have allowed the fourth-most goals against in the league, an average of 3.22 per game. The power play...