Early Season Takeaways: Boston Bruins
Off to a 3 and 3 start after their win last night against the always hated Vancouver Canucks the Bruins find themselves 5th place in the Atlantic division. Which considering their opponents is probably not where a lot of us fans thought they’d be after the six game stretch. The two puzzling back to back loses to the AVS and losing to the hot starting Vegas Golden Knights have left us in the middle the pack, the good news is there’s lots of season left.
On the game last night the B’s welcomed Patrice Bergeron and David Backes back into the fold last night and what a difference in stability those two make. Bergy had a 4 point night in his return from injury and while Backes didn’t make the score sheet but I believe he added some defensive balance and net front presence that was missed in his absence. Bjork continues to impress getting 2 goals in the first period and adding a helper later. The B’s took advantage of a five minute power play netting 3 goals in that time frame and really putting the game out reach early. Vatrano was hit from behind into the boards by Erick Gudbranson who received a 5 minute major for boarding then Tim Schaller stepped up to the plate to defend his teammate and had a healthy scrap with Gudbranson who received 5 for fight and a 10 game misconduct. The Canucks never really recovered from the beat down they took on the PK. The made it interesting scoring two goals late in the in the 2nd but Marchand’s had already scored a goal and Bergerons power play goal in the 3rd put the game away. Agostino made his return to the big club as well and seemed to be a little more confident with the puck and getting to the net. All in all was a nice well rounded game from the Black and Gold who will look to keep things going against Buffalo on Saturday.
Some other things to note here, Rask is out with a concussion and going through proper protocol after being run into at practice, Khudobin will likely see the majority of the starts in his absence with Zane acting as backup. Ryan Spooner is out 4-6 weeks which is a tough pill for him to swallow after coming off a pretty good preseason. He signed a one year deal in the offseason and looked to show any doubters that he can perform for this club, hopefully he comes back with the same fire and determination he showed in the preaseason and make some noise on the 3rd line. Acciari still out after his finger surgery and is still weeks away and the B’s have the bottom 6 depth coverage that he doesn’t need to rush back. Belesky (healthy scratch last night) and Vatrano (last night excluded) continue to be non factors for the B’s and one has to wonder if someone like Peter Cehlarik and Kenny Agostino can get the chances and make enough noise take their spots in the lineup. We’ll see what happens Saturday night at the Garden.