This time, there was a good reason to bury the Bruins.
Posted at 11:04 AM
If the best defender, Charlie McAvoy, is injured, he could miss at least the first half of the season. Ditto Brad Marchand. At 37, their first position, Patrice Bergeron, was considering retirement; David Kriegsey was trying to fill a gap in the middle of the second streak at 36 after a season in the Czech Republic.
And there was this new coach, Montrealer Jim Montgomery, on the road to recovery after being fired in Dallas in December 2019 for alcoholism.
Here we are in November, and as of Thursday morning, the Bruins had the NHL’s best record: 9-1-0, 45 goals scored, 26 allowed.
David Pastrnak found the momentum of the good times with 18 points in 10 games, Hampus Lindholm made up for McAvoy’s loss in defense, Bergeron and Krejci produce one point per game, and goalkeeper Linus Ullmark left for a. Great start and Marchand is just back in the game…
Bruins’ directors, boss Cam Neely and DG Don Sweeney, operate in an atypical fashion, but we must salute their creativity.
They obviously couldn’t build such an interesting squad without the selflessness of their captain Bergeron, who agreed to return to the game for a year for a salary of 2.5 million, undoubtedly his NHL contract deal.
The acquisition of Hampus Lindholm is a good example of the expertise of Neely and Sweeney. The 6-foot-4, 215-pound defensive man, capable of playing 24 minutes a game, brilliance in attack and defense, isn’t running the streets.
Lindolm will enjoy his independence in July. The Bruins offered young defender Urho Vaakanainen, his first-round pick in 2022 and two second-round picks, in 2023 and 2024, to Ducks for him, then lightly signing him to extend his contract for eight years at an annual salary of 6.5 million.
For Nellie and Sweeney, 22 years olde An overall pick (the Ducks drafted Nathan Gaucher with that choice) and two picks in the second round were more than worth the sacrifice for the first left-back over the next eight years.
In the Bruins’ stunning victory over the Penguins on Tuesday, which Boston wiped out from 5-1, Lindholm scored 29:47 and had four points, including the winning goal in overtime.
Lendolm’s 11 points in 10 games is an anomaly, averaging around thirty points per season, but this Swedish defender would be worth his weight in gold for a long time in Boston.
Let’s also remember how the Bruins got Taylor Hall. They only exchanged Anders Bjork and a second-round pick with Sabers as Hall’s value dropped.
Hall, 30, may not be the prolific striker he once was, but he picked up 61 points last year and already has five goals in ten games. His six million contract for another three years is reasonable. It allows Boston to better balance its lines.
The arrival of Pavel Zacha is another great example of wise possession. Sixth overall pick in 2015, many demons fans viewed Zacha as a disappointing young center. True, it never lived up to expectations.
For Bruins, the 25-year-old was in his position in the third line, but also capable of playing a role up front, on the flank as well as in the middle. The price wasn’t exorbitant: Eric Hola, 31, 44 points last year, one of his career bests.
Zakka started the season on the left, then replaced fallen Craigsey in central Hall and Pasternak. He has six points after ten matches. Maybe he can cross 40 points for the first time in his career. He would have done so in 2021 over the course of a full season as he earned 35 points in 50 games.
Creative genius allows Bruins’ managers to make up for their weakness in the draft. Since Charlie McAvoy in 2016, no youngster, with the exception of goalkeeper Jeremy Swayman, has been able to break through the formation permanently. Admittedly, the Bruins did not drop out in the top 15 during this stretch, and went without a first-round pick three out of six times.
Fabian Lisel is undoubtedly their best hope. This is 21e The 2021 team earned nine points in seven games in its first year in the MLS. It’s very thin after him.
But if the past is the guarantor of the future, the Bruins will undoubtedly succeed in finding a leading position for 25 or 26 years the day Bergeron and Krejci pull out. At the moment, Quebec does not give the impression of a player at the end of his career.
do not miss
- Guillaume Lefrançois came up with another brilliant idea: grill the Jets’ top scorer and Canada, Cole Caufield and Kyle Connor, on Thursday night, to find out their secrets.
- Quebec gymnast Laurie Dinomy has just won the team bronze at the Liverpool World Championships, thus allowing the Canadians to qualify for the Paris Olympics. Simon Drouin details.
- Georges St-Pierre, Eric Guay, Benoit Haute, Martin St-Louis, Michel Gendron and Olga Hriac just entered the Hall of Fame at the Pantheon des Sports de Québec. Nicholas Richard writes that they all have one thing in common.