Jay Leach returns to Bruins as Jim Montgomery reshuffles staff




Bruins

“We believe Jay will integrate quickly and complement our current staff as he comes back to the Bruins to work with our defense corps.”

Jay Leach is returning to the Bruins after three seasons with the Kraken. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

The Bruins announced several changes to their coaching staff on Wednesday evening, with Jay Leach making his return to Boston after spending the previous three years with the Seattle Kraken.

Leach was named an assistant coach on Jim Montgomery’s staff, with Joe Sacco promoted to associate coach and John McLean changing roles — and joining the development staff as the team’s skating and skills coach.

Leach found himself back on the market this offseason after Seattle fired head coach Dave Hakstol earlier this spring. The 44-year-old was viewed as a potential head coach in waiting for Boston after coaching the Providence Bruins for five years — but then left to join the Kraken in 2021.

Leach, who played 70 games in the NHL as a defenseman, will be tasked with working with Boston’s D corps in his new role on Montgomery’s staff.

“The Boston Bruins are excited to welcome Jay Leach back to the organization,” Bruins general manager Don Sweeney said in a statement. “Jay was a very successful coach with the Providence Bruins where he greatly impacted our player development system, and he also brings valuable experience as an assistant coach from the Seattle Kraken.

“We believe Jay will integrate quickly and complement our current staff as he comes back to the Bruins to work with our defense corps.”

Sacco, who joined Boston’s coaching staff in 2014, solidified himself as Montgomery’s No. 2 with his new promotion, with his work on Boston’s penalty kill routinely drawing high marks.

McLean focused in more of a skills role last season in Boston, while also serving as an “eye in the sky” for the coaching staff during games in 2023.

“I’m thrilled to have Jay Leach join our coaching staff,” Montgomery said. “Jay has an impressive track record at both the AHL and NHL level, and his experience connecting with players will greatly benefit our team.”

“I’d like to congratulate Joe Sacco on his promotion to Associate Coach. Joe has been an integral part of this staff due to his experience and the passion he brings to our group every day,” Montgomery continued. “I also want to thank John McLean for his work as an Assistant Coach this past season, and I’m grateful his knowledge of the game will continue to be a tremendous asset for our player development group.”





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