To the Boston Bruins: You have a Problem

By Chris Blackey

What started out as a season on the fast track is suddenly sinking like the Titanic. That might be a bit strong, but you are dropping winnable points at an alarming rate. You’ve been getting points via ties, but that is just keeping you afloat right now. It’s also a problem because Toronto and Tampa are starting to knock on your backdoor.

It would be best if you turned this around before you find yourselves falling down in the standings. Take a look back and check the last 10 games, Your best win at home was against Washington, but even that was fool’s gold as you were outplayed entirely outside of that first period. What is alarming is the wins you didn’t pick up against inferior teams such as the Devils, Kings, and the Blue Jackets.

It would help if you got those wins against inferior teams. There is always that notion of ‘well, the team is still getting a point.’ That’s not good enough. Not for this team. You are a better team than what we’re seeing right now. The frustration is boiling over into your locker room as well. Just listen to the interviews after the losses from your teammates. They’re saying all the right things, but their body language spews frustration.

The team needs a kick in the pants. Let me be clear here: I wouldn’t say I like playing Armchair GM. But in this case, I will. Let’s start with the elephant in the room again. Who is going to play on the right of David Krejci? This has been a question for so long it’s become part of the fiber here in Boston. We hear names thrown out like Chris Kreider, Tyler Toffoli, and Kyle Palmieri, to name a few. This is a situation that Don Sweeney needs to address now instead of waiting until the trade deadline. There is also the idea you will stay in-house with the like of Karson Kuhlman or Zach Senyshyn getting called up for a chance to audition for a permanent 2nd line fixture.



What if the problem isn’t on the right side, but on the left side of the line? I know most people freak out once you talk cynically about Jake DeBrusk around here. That is not my intention here. But at this point, don’t you need to ask the question that maybe they don’t work well together? With the way Bruce likes tinkering with lines, let’s try something different here. Why not drop Jake down to the 3rd line with Coyle and Heinen? We go back to the right side issue with Krejci, but I don’t feel like Coyle belongs there. What I propose is this for the 2nd line: Bjork-Krejci-Senyshyn/Kuhlman.

You could give that a shot before making a move. What do I prefer this team does, though? Those of you on Twitter already know. But for those of you who don’t, it’s Tyler Toffoli. I think his shot is custom made for Krejci. The idea of a Bjork-Krejci-Toffoli line works well for me, but that is far from a certainty. The other name which is sure to get mentioned here is Jack Studnicka. The young kid is tearing it up down in Providence in his rookie year. Do they bring him up for a look? Would you bring him up to play wing instead of his center spot? The team has a core that isn’t getting any younger here.



Which makes me wonder at times how long do we have with the core group of Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, Tuukka Rask, Zdeno Chara, and Krejci? That window is closing fast. Please don’t waste the last few years hoping that it works itself out. There is that chance that they go all in, but that doesn’t seem likely at this point. There are more needs on this team as well, like a right side dman. What is it with the right side on this team? They could use an upgrade there as well, but I honestly don’t have a name there, so I won’t just throw names out. They could be talking about adding one, but I really don’t know as I’ve seen nothing out there.

These are just a few burning questions out there for the team. The Bruins will right the wrong though here. The leadership is still there, and that could develop into another deep playoff run for the Cup. Either way, the Bruins are too good for this to continue.

That is gonna do it for this time people. I want to thank Chris Mancuso for nagging me about writing for the Bruins Diehards. Let’s see how everything goes here as it is the first of many from me. Thank you for reading!

chrisblackey

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