With the Bruins in the midst of a crucial set this week against the Tampa Bay Lightning, points are going to be at a premium. With Boston holding a 7- point lead in the standings, these are going to definitely be the biggest games of the season thus far. In a season that has been full of mostly positive outcomes, we now must turn our attention to one that has been anything BUT positive of late. Where have you gone Jake DeBrusk? The third year winger has been a virtual ghost in this Bruins lineup; something that hasn’t gone unnoticed with Bruins fans and coach Cassidy himself. The Bruins need more from him. Period. End of sentence.
What is it with Jake that we keep circling the wagon expecting some consistency only to find a very streaky player? If this is going to be the player he is going to be in his career, then count me in for the ‘slightly concerned’ department. The kid is still young, being 23 years old, so there shouldn’t be total panic yet. But with him set to play his 200th game in the NHL, the sample size suggest that he is who he is. I don’t want to write a hit piece on him as that is not my style. But this trend needs to stop now. The team needs him to figure it out here with the playoffs just a short month away.
The Bruins maestro behind the bench has seen enough, as DeBrusk has been relegated to the third line in favor of the newest Bruins addition Nick Ritchie. We can look at this as a wake-up call. But is playing with arguably one of your better forwards in Charlie Coyle really a wake-up call? That depends on how you view the lines. I suppose in my eyes it is one. Who knows? Maybe Jake finds his game playing with Coyle because the team certainly hopes so. The Bruins are going to need a full team effort in order to lift Lord Stanley’s Cup at the end of it all.
We all know what happened last year, so I will spare us the nightmare again by not revisiting it. The funny thing about Jake is, he could easily go into one of those runs where he rips off 10 goals over 10 games and this could all be for naught. While I’m not saying this, you wonder if the Bruins would consider moving him instead of re-signing him this off-season. The idea is a bit brash as he is still a young talent, but you never know. For the record, I am opposed to trading him. Mainly because of the upside we think he has.
We live in a area where we expect our teams to deliver nightly and for that we make no apologies. Why should we? This is Boston where hard work and outcome mean everything, especially in the sports world. When a player goes missing it is noticeable. Unlike a few other fan bases, that will not fly around here. While I can continue to speak of Jake DeBrusk, I can also turn my attention to Anders Bjork. Where have you gone Bjorkie?
The problem isn’t just Jake as Anders Bjork has been given 9th floor duties of late and he’s gone into the Bruce Cassidy dog house. Does it seem like Bruce has been more authoritarian this season? The coach has always been a bit outspoken, but I don’t recall him delivering wake up calls like he has this season. What I have always liked about Bruce is his willingness to break up a line if he sees it is sputtering. Which is kinda odd in the same sense that it has taken this long for him to move Jake off David Krejci’s wing. The case can also be made here with the new players added, he wanted familiar faces playing alongside Krejci.
With regards to Kase and Ritchie, I have given myself a 10-game viewing period before I give a full assessment on them. There is always room for improvement right now. But that is gonna be for another article as I will be writing up a piece once the 10- game assessment is up on the players. The Bruins need these points this week just for some more breathing room. The Bruins have one of the best teams in the entirety of this great league. With the team still firing on all cylinders, they have been able to overcome a lack in production from certain players on this roster.
That is all people and hopefully this team cranks out some points this week down in Florida. We are just over a week away until I will be gracing the Garden for the game against Toronto. Those of you who will be at the game vs Toronto come say hi, I will be down in Loge 19 with my Krejci shirt on. Would be nice to meet some fellow Bruins fans in person. Go Bruins!