The Montreal Canadiens have fired Michel Therrien and hired recently dismissed Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien, the team announced Tuesday.

Canadiens Hire Claude Julien as head Coach

“I would like to sincerely thank Michel for his relentless work with the Montreal Canadiens over his eight seasons behind the bench, including the last five seasons when we worked together,” general manager Marc Bergevin said Tuesday.

“The decision to remove Michel from his coaching duties was a difficult one because I have lots of respect for him. I came to the conclusion that our team needed a new energy, a new voice, a new direction. Claude Julien is an experienced and well respected coach with a good knowledge of the Montreal market. Claude has been very successful as an NHL coach and he won the Stanley Cup. Today we hired the best available coach, and one of the league’s best. I am convinced that he has the capabilities to get our team back on the winning track.”

The Habs are first in the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference with a 31-19-8 record. Their last game was a 4-0 loss to the Bruins on Sunday, and next host the Winnipeg Jets on Saturday.

Julien, 56, was fired just last week (Feb. 7) by the Bruins, whom he led to a Stanley Cup win in 2011, and with whom he had been the longest-tenured coach in the NHL.

Therrien was in his fifth season of his second tour as Canadiens coach. Montreal missed the playoffs last season after goalkeeper Carey Price injured his knee in November.

This marks the second time the Habs have fired Therrien and replaced him with Julien. The same thing happened 46 games into the 2002-03 season. Julien ended up coaching there from 2003 to 2006.

The Bruins are six points behind the Canadiens in the Atlantic. The teams will not play each other again this regular season.

NEWARK, NJ – JANUARY 08: Claude Julien of the Boston Bruins instructs his team during the second period against the New Jersey Devils at the Prudential Center on January 8, 2016 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

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