Seven weeks into the season and seven weeks out from the playoffs, the Bruins stand in fourth place in the East with anywhere from 2-4 games in hand on the competition. The Bruins are three points behind the Canadiens with four games in hand. Since we last talked the Bruins endured their second losing streak of the season, both just two games, but haven’t lost otherwise.
The only two slip-ups the Bruins had in the last two weeks were against the Capitals and Habs, two teams the Bruins have traditionally had bad matchups with. The concerning issue about these losses were that the Bruins held leads they normally keep, leads that were guaranteed wins in years previous. The Bruins blew a one-goal lead in the third period against the Capitals and a 3-0 lead against the Canadiens. Both losses are tough to swallow but the fact that the Bruins got past those consecutive losses for two straight wins. Both wins were clean, fairly dominant wins. They were two wins the Bruins should have gotten and did.
Goal of the Week
One thing that has come as a relief for Bruins fans is that Tyler Seguin is finally coming into his own. It took a month for him to shake off the European style, but Seguin is finally starting to get to the dirty areas of the ice, backcheck, and even block shots. Along with that extra effort and grit, goals have followed. Seguin has only been held off the scoresheet twice in the last 11 games. In those 11 games he has six goals and seven assists. In the first 11 games of the season Seguin had only two goals and four assists. I think the latter are more of what Seguin is, but like other scorers on the Bruins in the last five years, he is going to have both hot and cold streaks, that’s just the nature of the Julien system.
Save of the Week
On a lesser scale, David Krejci‘s game has started to come around in all three areas of the ice. Krejci’s entire line seems to either be the best line on the ice or so cold their a borderline non-factor. This happens far too often for a first line. It also doesn’t help that this line is the Bruins least defensively-responsible line. However, over the past two weeks Krejci has begun to become more consistent, especially with his defensive responsibilities. I’ve seen numerous times where Krejci has rushed back to break up a 2-on-1 or taken the body along the boards to stop a play in his own zone. It’s something that we’ve rarely seen from the talented center, but certainly a welcome sign.
Fight of the Week
The biggest roster news since we last talked is the Chris Bourque demotion. I, like many Bruins fans, wanted Bourque to work mostly because of his last name but partially because he’s the kind of player we value in Boston. We value that gritty, versatile player in Boston and what we found out with Chris Bourque, is that we value that kind of player to a fault at times. Sure, Bourque was replacing Benoit Pouliot‘s 17 goals, which nobody expected him to replicate, but what nobody counted on was how drastically the third line would be effected. Chris Kelly and Rich Peverley took huge steps back this year because the line just didn’t click. Both have looked instantly better with Jordan Caron as their new linemate. There is a familiarity there, but the demotion must have also motivated the two. I expect them to be much better in the second half.
1. Tyler Seguin- 5 goals, 4 assists, +5
2. Patrice Bergeron- 2 goals, 5 assists, +5
3. Brad Marchand- 3 goals, 5 assists, +8
The other big Bruins news, well it’s not really news, is that Carl Soderberg might be kinda sorta interested in finally joining the Bruins. Maybe. Soderberg was acquired by the Bruins in 2007 for Hannu Toivonen. He has never come over to the NHL but is leading the Swedish Elite League in points this season. He’s never so much as come to a Bruins camp. Nevertheless, the 6’3 210 lb forward appears to be ready to get to the show. The Swedish mystery man seems to have been afraid to leave his home nation but if he does decide to come over to the Bruins he adds size and skill to the Bruins troublesome third line. Carl had 60 points in 54 games in the SEL, which is generally considered the third best league in the world, behind the NHL and KHL. If he can even be a .50 point per game guy for the Bruins he’d be a hell of a deadline pickup.