The Bruins continued their winning ways this Saturday, having beaten the New Jersey 1-0 at TD Garden. This one was mostly a snoozer, as most are against the sorry Devils. When the Devils suck, they play an awfully boring hockey game. It’s been that way for years, and this year was no different.
Much of the game was a battle of Goalies. Tuukka Rask manned the pipes for the Bruins, and Mackenzie Blackwood for the Devils.
The only goal of the game came early on a Bruins power-play:
A filthy goal from Marchand who received a disgusting no-look, behind the back pass from Patrice Bergeron. It was so naughty it should be illegal in some states. This goal came just 2:37 into the First. Neither team would score for the remainder of the contest.
Rask stopped all 20 shots he faced, while Blackwood stopped 29 of 30. Including a Marchand Penalty Shot in the First.
Marchand with some improbable history in this one. There isn’t a more obscure stat that is more fitting for Brad Marchand than that.
Next up for the Bruins are the surging Carolina Hurricanes. The Canes have won 8 of their last 9 and 5 in a row. This will be a good test for the Bruins, playing a team almost as hot as they are. Sebastian Aho leads the way with 73 points, followed by Tuevo Teravainen in second with 61. This isn’t a typical Canes team with piss-poor forwards.
They’ve got quality youth in Aho and Alex Svechnikov. They made a ballsy mid-season trade when they were out of the playoff picture to acquire Minnesota Wild forward, Nino Niederreiter. He’s provided secondary scoring with 41 points. Canes biggest whole comes in net where they sport two below average, stop-gap goalies. We will have a better idea tomorrow whether Peter Mrazek or Curtis McElhinney will man the crease. Bruins will need to be as focused as they were against Tampa to win a 13th out of 17. Lets keep those sorry Maple Leafs in the rear-view.
The Boston Bruins welcomed the surging Tampa Bay Lightning last night, and came away with a resounding 4-1 victory. The Bolts came in having won 9 games in a row. They already post a whopping 102 points. The Bruins are the next best Eastern Conference team with 85. Didn’t matter on this night, as the Bruins stifled the Lightning from the get go.
I was just hoping they’d keep it close, but from the get-go they were all over Tampa, out-shooting them 32-9 after two periods. Jake DeBrusk was the only Bruin able to sneak one past Tampa Net-minder, Louis Domingue. Domingue was having himself a career game, making highlight reel save after highlight reel save. Finally DeBrusk snuck one through in the Second.
Jake DeBrusk continues to roll.
Make that 7 goals and 12 points in his last eight games.
I can’t remember the exact stat, but through the first two periods, I believe Kenny Albert mentioned the Bruins had only allowed two shots by Tampa forwards. Stamkos, Kucherov, Point, Tyler Johnson, Palat, and countless others. They could only muster up two freaking shots from forwards.
Tampa woke up to start the Third Period, finally applying consistent pressure on a Rask and the Bruins. Able to withstand the pressure, Noel Acciari stuffed a rebound past Domingue to break open the floodgates.
The game would finish 4-1, as the Bruins finish February 11-0-4. The last time they had a perfect month was November 2011. It’s been just a sensational month. Our deadline acquisitions played well again, but registered 0 pints between the two. I actually really like Charlie Coyle. He is a very very good Third Line Center. He’s got size, decent skating ability, and generates scoring chances. Problem is his linemates fucking BLOW. Backes is too slow, and Nordstrom just is one of the worst hockey players I’ve ever seen. Due to some re-shuffling thanks to Kuraly missing a few days with an injury, we finally see a decent player on Coyle’s wing in, Peter Chelarik. The past three games there was Nordstrom and Backes flanking Coyle. 🤢………🤮.
Backes and Nordstrom have 4 points between them since Christmas. All from Backes.
How embarrassing, Nordstrom. Whole fucking net to shoot at, and flops it into Domingue’s glove. Shame on you, Joakim. Domingue got lots of praise for this save, he got lots of help from Nordstrom.
So moving forward I’d like to see some other combinations, and giving Charlie Coyle a legit player in his wing. Bruins next game is Saturday at TD Garden against the rotten, New Jersey Devils. The Bruins look to cement their place as one of the NHL’s elite over the last Month of the season.
Two nights ago the Boston Bruins dismantled the San Jose Sharks, 4-1 at TD Garden. The game featured sexy goals, big hits, and plenty of bad blood. The Bruins first game back from a lengthy road trip brought plenty of emotion, especially from the Captain.
41 year old Captain, Zdeno Chara, and San Jose Shark Diva Evander Kane squared off in the Third Period. The fight was brewing all game, as Kane was running around picking fights with multiple Bruins once the game was out of hand at 4-1. A second period flurry of goals from McAvoy, DeBrusk, and Marchand put the game away. It was the Captains bout with Kane that put the icing on the cake.
At 41 the big guy can still peat the piss out of anyone. It’s much more rare than in the past, but he is still just too strong for anyone in NHL. Kane got a head start by knocking Z to the ice, but Z got up like it was no problem. He then proceeded to beat the bag out of Kane causing TD Garden to go nuts. Throwback city, it was great.
Tonight will be the biggest measuring stick the Bruins will have faced in some time. They played some solid Western Conference teams on that trip, but tonight they’ll play the best team in the NHL. Tampa Bay comes to town having won last night in New York. Tampa has an astonishing 102 points already. It’s still February. They are historically good, with Stamkos, Point, Hedman, and Kucherov leading the way. Tonight we’ll see how the Bruins stack up. We will get a good look into weather or not the Deadline acquisitions will make an impact.
In his first game as a Bruins on Tuesday, Marcus Johansson looked like he belonged. He certainly is flashy enough with the puck on his stick to make things happen. He did so by contributing an assist on DeBrusk’s goal.
Hopefully he keeps it up, and builds on a solid debut. While he wasn’t who I wanted the Bruins to grab at the deadline, he came pretty much as advertised. Super skilled, crafty with the puck on his stick.
Charlie Coyle has been good so far, problem is Cassidy is hanging this guy out to dry. His line mates have been Joakim Nordstrom and David Backes. Both are just terrible. Coyle is playing well, carrying that line, but he is being held back by these two stiffs. Hopefully the following games we will see legitimate hockey players on his wing like Peter Cehlarik. Regardless, tonight will be a great test to see if they will have any shot to push Tampa in a Playoff series. I am not holding my breath.
With regular 60 point scorer, Mark Stone on the move to the Vegas Golden Knights, the Boston Bruins laid another Trade Deadline egg yesterday afternoon.
Having been in the conversation to acquire Stone for upwards of two weeks, Donny Sweeney couldn’t get it done….again. Much like Hossa and Kovalchuk from 2008-2011 (that was Chiarelli but still, John Tavares, and Kovalchuk again this past summer. Most reported the Bruins were pushing hard for the Superstar Winger. Stone was unable to negotiate a contract extension with the Senators, which made him available to contenders.
Per @DarrenDreger, OTT receives Brannstrom, Oscar Lindberg and DAL 2nd round pick in 2020 for Mark Stone.
Once again Donny failed. This might be criminal case of failure. How do you have an aging Bergeron, Marchand, Chara, Rask, and Krejci on your team, and not put all your resources you possibly could into maximizing their window? Instead they trade for Marcus Johansson who is simply not good enough. I shouldn’t be surprised, this is the Bruins “MO”. You’ll always find the Bruins associated with the biggest available trade targets, or Free Agents. They never have the balls to pull the trigger. This team had a chance to be something special, had Sweeney invested future assets. He was a afraid to trade a First Round Pick, because last year he pissed one away on the corpse of Rick Nash. Mark Stone is 26. They would be all sorts of dangerous adding a 60 point winger in his prime, but instead they add two guys who combine for 55. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride. Marcus Johansson is a pretty crafty player, loads of skill especially with the puck on his stick. More of a pass first player, I would think he’d be on the second line with Krejci and DeBrusk. Problem with MoJo is he took a cheap shot from Brad Marchand just last season:
The guy hasn’t been the same since, not many would be after taking that Bush League shot. We’ll see how he contributes, but I don’t think he and Coyle is enough to match Tampa. Not even close. The Bruins just don’t have the stones (no pun intended) to maximize their ever slimming Stanley Cup window. People will say, “They didn’t mortgage their future!”. To that I say, there is no fucking future. This is it, the next 2-4 years is about as long as Bruins fans can expect to compete with the aging roster. One more bonafide stud, and they woulda been a real threat. Instead, we’ll have to pray they go in some magical run with a string of upsets.
B’s take on San Jose today at TD Garden, where MoJo will make his Bruins debut. Put up or shut up time with just over a month left.
In the midst of a Six game winning streak, the Boston Bruins added depth to their lineup by trading for Minnesota Wild Center, Charlie Coyle. In return, Minnesota received Ryan Donato and a 5th round draft pick. This is a solid trade for both sides. Donato really hit snag toward the end of last season, which he looked to be a sure fire fit in the Top 6. This year saw Ryan struggle mightily, traveling between Boston and Providence for most of the year.
Needless to say he was struggling. Barely amassing 12 points in 18 AHL games for a guy who is labeled as a goal scorer is fucking bad. Watching him play you can tell he has a wicked shot. Problem is he doesn’t have the hockey IQ, toughness, and willingness to get to quality scoring areas. Most of his shots come from around the perimeter. I still think he could do with finishing this season in the AHL and playing a full season down there next year. Sure seems like his development has been rushed. There is still hope for him, but a good amount of time in Iowa (Minnesota’s AHL affiliate) will be needed. Who knows, maybe they plug him in right away in Minny? Can see that happening too, and in typical Bruins fashion he becomes an All Star like Seguin, Kessel, and Blake Wheeler.
As for Charlie Coyle? Not a bad addition for the Bruins by any means. He is a solid player, who can play up and down the lineup. He play Center or Wing. I do think he has been brought here to be a Third Line Center, which is one of two massive holes in the Bruins forward group.
Charlie is good for anywhere between 35-50 points a year, which will bring much needed depth to the Bruins lineup. Hopefully, Coyle has been brought in to solidify the Third Line, and NOT to be the scoring Winger the Second Line needs. We’ll see, but Don Sweeney had this to say:
Don Sweeney on if the Bruins have any additional plans ahead of the trade deadline:
"I don’t know if we’re necessarily going to do anything else. … We will continue to look at the marketplace."
Fingers crossed they are still trying to pry Mark Stone from Ottawa. They certainly aren’t going to say out loud if they are, but this is worrisome. Monday is the NHL trade deadline, which will see a plethora of moves made by Playoff contenders. I would like to think the Bruins know they need one more piece, and I can’t think of a more perfect piece than Mark Stone.
I fucking hope so. In terms of the On-Ice stuff, the Bruins continued their winning ways with a 3-2 Shootout win over Vegas last night. It’s their 7th win in a row, which has propelled them to second in the Atlantic Division. Some of the struggling youngsters such as, Debrusk, Heinen, and Peter Cehlarik are coming alive. Next matchup is Saturday in St. Louis, who have won 11 straight. Can’t wait.
We’re past the halfway point in the 2019 NHL Regular Season, and the Boston Bruins rest in 3rd place in the Atlantic Division. Despite major injury issues at the beginning of the Season, Bruce Cassidy’s bunch has once again kept the ship afloat.
That tells you that the Bruins are kind of good this year, but looks may be deceiving. They are not great. As of this moment, the Bruins pretty much live and die by two things:
1. Tuukka Rask, who’s been phenomenal since his early season woe’s. Rask is clocking in the Top 3 for Save Percentage across the league.
2. Marchand, Bergeron, Pastrnak. The Erection Line, or better known as the best line in hockey.
Those two things are keeping them in the middle of the Eastern Conference Standings. From there on, they have a boat load issues. Biggest issue is secondary scoring. They rely so heavily on the Erection Line, and Powerplay it often gets overlooked, but the Bruins have nothing after line 1. David Krejci is having a good year statistically, even though he’s great one week, invisible the next. That’s the “MO” of David Krejci. His linemate, Jake Debrusk is a good player, and is a good fit for the Second Line. He has 19 points, but just isn’t as lethal as we’d all like. No issue with Debrusk whatsoever, he’s nails and will one day wear a letter on his chest I am convinced. It’s Krejci’s other wing that’s an issue.
Krejci’s right wing has been a a revolving door of stiff after stiff after stiff. Ryan Donato, a second year guy who looked to be a Top 6 piece last year, has been up and down all year. He’s regressed badly. Last year he had 9 points in 12 NHL games, this year he has 9 points in 34 games. Not good. Anders Bjork had 3 points in 20 NHL games this year, and 10 in 13 AHL games before being sidelined with a season ending injury. Those guys were both rushed into NHL duty, and will likely be spending the majority of this season and next in Providence.
Currently Peter Chelarik is manning the wing, and has produced decently in his stint. Chelarik has 4 points in 8 games so far. Hopefully he keeps it up, but I’m not holding my breath.
To make matters worse the Bruins third line has been shitty too. Danton Heinen has regressed badly after nearly cracking 20 goals his Rookie Year. David Backes is a complete shell of himself, as his physical play style has caught up to him. Both those two have been in and out of the lineup all year. They have a quality Fourth Line with Chris Wagner, Sean Kuraly, and Noel Acciari. They are physical, and contribute with big goals. No issues there.
As we inch closer to the deadline the need for depth, and secondary scoring becomes more glaring. They cannot just sit on their hands with the Roster as it currently stands. Don Sweeney owe it to Bergeron, Chara, Rask, and (FINE) Krejci to add for a playoff push. It allows Chelarik to move down a line, which is probably better suited to him. Who should the Bruins look at?
1. Mark Stone
Mark Stone is the ideal trade option for the Bruins to help fill that second line void. He’s cracked 60 points in all but one of his five full seasons as a Senator. Stone checks all the boxes for me. He’s a bit of a pest a la, Brad Marchand, but he’s got more size. Most importantly, he’s and expiring contract. His deal is up at the end of the year, so his $7.3 AAV is easier to stomach. Adding Mark Stone is my primo, creme de la creme target. On a team like Ottawa, who’s tanking, a deal could be made.
2. Kevin Hayes
The Bruins haven’t had much success with Hayes brothers, but Kevin is an option I’d consider. Hayes isn’t quite the player Stone is in terms of goal scoring ability, but he is younger, and is good to contribute around 40 points a season. Hayes is versatile, with the ability to play center or wing. The Bruins have a solid trading relationship with the Rangers, and with them out of the Playoff picture I could see a deal being made. Kevin will be a UFA after this year, so his $5.1 million AAV will not be an issue.
3. Brayden Schenn
The Bruins have been linked to Schenn at earlier points this season. St. Louis loaded up on talent this past summer, and they came out of the gate as one of the league’s worst teams. All signs pointed to the Blues selling off names like Pietrangelo, Tarasenko, and Schenn. They’ve recently turned a corner, and are a mere few points out of the last Wild Card spot in the West. Last year was a career year for Schenn, potting 70 points for the first time in his career. He’s not on pace for similar this year, but he is on pace for his career average of around 40-50 points. Much like Hayes, Schenn can play Wing or Center if needed. He’s got 2 years left on his deal at $5.1 million AAV. A deal will be tougher since the Blues have regained their form, but I could still see one being made for Schenn.
Notice how Wayne Simmonds is not on the list, Bruins fans? For some reason Bruins fans are hell bent on acquiring Simmonds. At 30 he is half the the player he once was, which was a solid 40-50 point guy, who was tough and fought. This is pretty much what Milan Lucic was for the Bruins, and I think that’s why Simmonds is always mentioned. Like Lucic, Simmonds is slowly regressing with age, so trading for Simmonds on the back 9 is pretty much identical to last years Rick Nash trade. Let’s not do that again, the Bruins need an honest to goodness, in their prime, goal scoring stud.
Over the next few weeks we will find out what the Bruins have in store. Sadly, they are in a spot where they kinda have to take a kick at the can. I hope Don Sweeney see’s what everyone else see’s, a team that needs guys who can put the fucking puck in the net.
It’s been awhile since we last discussed puck. Last evening, the Boston Bruins lost their third game in a row, all within the Atlantic Division (Detroit, Florida, Tampa Bay). They are still holding onto a playoff spot right now, as they are 14-10-4 good enough for 32 points. Problem is, the Atlantic Division sports the three best teams in the Eastern Conference in the Buffalo Sabres, Toronto Maple Leafs, and Tampa Bay Lightning. The Bruins are going to have to push for a Wildcard playoff spot, and why is that you might ask?
Easy. Lack of talent. This same time last year, we were watching the beginning of a magical run for the Bruins, which skyrocketed them up to the top of the East. They had a crop of young guys come up through the system, and contribute right away. Danton Heinen, Jake DeBrusk, Charlie McAvoy, Ryan Donato, and Anders Bjork all got time with the big club, and performed well. Bjork is the only exception as an injury derailed most of his season.
First culprit, Danton Heinen. Heinen amassed 47 points in his Rookie season, which is VERY good. This season he has regressed badly with only 5 points total. Heinen’s game is often very quiet, so when he’s not scoring, you can’t even recall if he even took a shift. He is a very soft player, who often gets pushed around. Although I saw a lot of good things from him last season, his decline started in February of last year. He’s never really recovered. There were trade rumblings with his name last Summer, which probably should have been investigated further.
Ryan Donato was a late season addition last year, coming out of Harvard and the U.S. Development Program. Donato contributed right away in 2018, as he managed 9 points in 12 Regular Season games with the Bruins. He looked ready to slot into the Top 6 no questions asked. He was forced into the Press-box during the Postseason, simply because it was just too soon to expect him to be ready for Playoff Hockey. When the Bruins became strapped for secondary scoring, he was inserted into the Lineup as desperation measure. He slotted into 3 playoff games Registering 0 goals, 0 assists, and 0 total points. This season, Ryan has not only stalled, but it looks like he has regressed. He’s managed a measly 2 goals in 15 games with the Bruins this year. He’s been so bad he was sent down to Providence for a 10 game stint. It’s a shame, because he was supposed to be an addition to the Top 6. Much like Heinen
Anders Bjork is another skilled forward, who was supposed to slot into the Top 6 eventually in his time in Boston. Bjork is a small winger, who is seen as pure goal scorer. In 30 games with the Bruins in 2017, Bjork netted 12 total points. He wasn’t that great, but was slowly coming along as a rookie. Eventually he was sent to Providence for development, where a shoulder injury ended his season early. Fully healthy this year, Bjork has regressed. With only 1 goal, and 3 total points after 20 games, Bjork was sent to Providence for development. Not a good sign for him, considering the Bruins only employ three forwards who can score.
Under-performing prospects is severely hurting the Bruins, as they do not have a good forwards outside of their Top Line. Marchand, Bergeron, and Pastrnak is the best line in hockey, and can literally score at will. It is the main reason the Bruins are in a playoff position at this point. That singular line. Other than that, there really is nothing. It is a big problem, because as always the Bruins are banged up. Almost all of their Defensemen have spent time on IR this year. McAvoy, Chara, Krug, and Kevan Miller have all been out for an extended period of time. In addition, Patrice Bergeron has been out for the past month. So, now the first line has been hamstrung. Colby Cave (whom I despise) has been Centering the Top Line. Cave is an Un-Drafted Free Agent, and it is for a reason. Shockingly he has only 2 lousy assists from his 7 games in Boston. Dude sucks. Yet he gets to Center Pastrnak and Marchand at will.
While there is decent skill in David Krejci and Jake DeBrusk there isn’t anything in terms of talent in the remainder of the Forward Group. It is a plethora of 4th liners, whom they hope will somehow explode into talented, corner picking snipers. They even claimed another fucking scrub on waivers yesterday:
BOOOOOOOOO. This guy is nothing but a JAG with speed, whom the Bruins are hoping to be a stopgap. The Bruins have the Fourth Line covered. They’ve got $6 million dollar, David Backes roaming the fourth line Right Wing, they’ve got Chris Wagner and his 3 points, they got Sean Kuraly and his 4 points, and they got Joakim Nordstrom with his scorching 5 points. Nordstrom has been the hand-chosen garbage Bruins player that gets Top Line minutes. There is one every year, Riley Nash, Tim Schaller, Tommy Wingels, and on and on. The struggles with this team are all about talent. They do not have it. Their highest paid player (David Krejci) scored his 3rd goal last night. It was his 1st in 18 games. Unacceptable.
The Bruins are at a Crossroads right now. They have an aging core of players from the old regime, and overvalued prospects. This next group of games is crucial for their season. Toronto and Ottawa back-to-back this weekend, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, and Montreal next Weekend, with the Arizona Coyotes in between. More losses than wins out of this stretch would have me contemplating major changes. The longer the struggles go on, the more I think it is a talent issue. The kids who were so highly touted, are simply not very good.
Don Sweeney should be doing his damnedest to trade off pieces that weigh the team down. First two I would trade being Krejci and Backes. Going to be near impossible to do so, as they both suck, are old, and make too much money. Backes has 5 points this year and has 3 years at $6 million per year left on his deal. Not many teams are going to be willing to take him. There is a chance a struggling team would take him on simply to reach the Salary Cap Floor, or they’ll take on Backes to get another asset. The Bruins could also retain money from his Salary. They could trade him to a playoff contender and split his $6 million with the team they are trading him to. More incentive to acquire the player, if his cap hit is half what it could be.
Krejci will have more suitors on the trade front, but he has a massive salary and No-Trade Clause to deal with. He would have to be asked to waive it in order to be traded. He’s also got 3 more years at $7.25 million per year. Krejci has more upside, especially for contenders looking for depth heading into the playoffs, but again the Bruins would maybe have to eat some of his Salary, or even toss in a prospect to get anything of value in return.
Third guy is Tuuka Rask. Its time to move on from Rask. He has had yet another roller-coaster year, starting out really poorly and being forced to take a Leave of Absence. Since he has come back, he has been rock solid. If he keeps playing well, some Playoff team with weak Goaltending would potentially spend some assets to add him at the Trade Deadline. Similar to the other two stiffs Rask has 3 years at $7 million per left on his contract. Same workarounds would have to apply.
It’s not over quite yet for the Bruins, who are just starting to get healthy on Defense, and will be getting Bergeron back soon. They very well could continue to maintain their position in the playoff standing. If they continue to slip, I just don’t think they have the talent to climb out of it. Hopefully I am wrong about this and the kids go on tear here to calm everyone’s nerves. With each passing game, I am starting to think it may be time for the Bruins to pack up shop on the 2019 season. There is no other options within the Organization to help remedy the lack of scoring. Big problem, because they had a chance to draft Offensive Super-Stars. 2015 had the Bruins drafting three times in a row. In what was the deepest draft in my entire life, Don Sweeney reached on two of three of those picks. 13 was Zboril who got called up this year when every single Bruins Defenseman was hurt. He was not even close to being ready, and it’s his 3rd year since being drafted. Un-Drafted Connor Clifton looked better in his Call-Up. Clifton looked pretty awful in his stay.
Zach Senyshyn hasn’t even earned a call up. Jake DeBrusk is a nice player. He is able to provide that coveted secondary scoring, is ballsy, and plays with energy. All that’s great, but those two whiffs. That’s a slap in the face. There is elite talent at forward everywhere around where the Bruins selected. Two stiffs, and a solid NHL player. You pick three times in a row you better hit on two of three. The Bruins whiffed.
Let’s hope this upcoming week isn’t the death of the Bruins 2019 season, and beyond.
The Montreal Canadiens were dealt a crushing blow last Thursday, as news was made public that Shea Weber would be missing the next 5-6 months due to knee, and ankle surgeries. While it sucks to see one of the games greats go down injured, I am more than thrilled with the damage it does to the Montreal Canadiens. I would like to think that this injury would make the Habs a lock to draft number 1 overall next year. With Shea Weber in the lineup they still had a very good chance to finish with the number 1 pick, but this news should seal the deal.
Another year, and another disaster of an off-season for the Bleu Blanc en Rouge. Slowly but surely, they tore down a Stanley Cup contending team. It all started in 2016, when rumblings of P.K. Subban being shopped around a bit. Of course this news was immediately shut down by General Manager Marc Bergevin. How could they ever trade the face of the franchise? The man who helped bring the Habs back into contention, the same man who donated over $10 million dollars to build a new Children’s Hospital in Montreal. That didn’t stop Marc Bergevin from executing one of the worst trades of all time.
The first domino in the Habs demise. This isn’t a terrible trade in terms of value. Subban and Weber are pretty much even on the ice. Subban has a slight edge, as he is a better overall skater than Weber. The issue here is age. P.K. is currently only 29, and around 27 at the time of this trade. Weber is now 32, and was 30 at the time of the trade. Subban has a $9 million dollar cap hit until 2022, and Weber has a $7.8 million dollar cap hit until 2026. Give me the contract that expires in 2022, and give me the younger player. It is the fact that he was the face of the Montreal Canadiens. He was the face of hockey’s most famous (horrid, vile, disgusting, putrid) franchise. How could you possibly trade this guy?
The Weber for Subban trade is such a head-scratcher. There was absolutely no need for this trade, because if it works out, it is a lateral move at best. It hasn’t worked out at all for Weber, who only played in 26 regular season games in 2018. He will miss a significant portion of 2018-19 as well. To this day, nobody can pinpoint a specific reason as to why P.K. Subban was traded from Montreal.
Just a few weeks later that same offseason, the Habs decided they wanted to make themselves even worse.
Andrew Shaw had spent five seasons as a member of the otherworldly Chicago Blackhawks. He was a valuable piece to the puzzle for Joel Quenneville, as Shaw brought toughness, attitude, and secondary scoring. He was a shithead on the ice, but he showed he could pot a few goals at timely occasions.
Not horrible numbers for a guy who was seen more as an agitator/pest, but Montreal went way over the top trading not one, but two second round picks for him. To make matters worse, shortly after this trade:
Marc Bergevin decided to reward Andrew Shaw with a 6 year, $15 million dollar extension just minutes after the trade. Andrew Shaw is a valuable player, he is one of those guys that is needed on almost every NHL team. The dude can hit, is willing to fight when needed, and scores goals. All of that said, a six year contract at $3.9 million dollars per season is just asinine. This contract is still hurting the Habitants to this day, as there has been a slow decline in production for Shaw. Fewer games played, and lower point totals. With there being 4 years left on his deal, Shaw is virtually immovable.
All was somewhat forgiven in 2016-17, as the Habs still managed to make the postseason. Hell, they won the Atlantic Division, finishing with 103 points. Mostly riding Carey Price, and they were bounced in six games by the New York Rangers. Despite the horrendous Subban trade, the Habs were still a playoff team, and had recently hired a one-time Stanley Cup winning Head Coach in Claude Julien.
The Montreal Canadiens then decided to dig themselves an even deeper hole. Despite 103 points and winning the Atlantic Division, it was obvious the Habs needed Center Depth. What did Marc Bergevin do? Well, he traded for a winger of course! He’s French-Canadian at least!
The Canadiens acquire Jonathan Drouin + a cond. 6th-round pick (2018) from TBL, in return for M. Sergachev + a cond. 2nd-round pick (2018).
Just another brutal trade from Marc Bergevin. Jonathan Drouin is a solid goal scorer, but he is not a natural center. Despite what the Canadiens tell you, he’s a left-winger. He signed a Six Year contract extension just minutes after the deal was completed. Turns out, Drouin really kind of sucks out of his natural position. In 2016-17 with the Tampa Bay Lightning, Drouin had a career year. In 73 games, he finished with 21 goals, 32 assists, for 53 total points. This year? Drouin’s productivity dropped, as he accumulated 13 goals, 33 assists, and 46 points. This drop is somewhat significant, as he managed to play four more games in 2018, playing in 77 total contests.
The piece’s the Canadiens gave up? Well, Mikhail Sergachev finished 2018 looking like a future top pairing Defenseman. While, he wasn’t one of the three finalists for the Calder Trophy (Rookie of the Year), Sergachev dazzled much like Boston’s Charlie McAvoy.
When it was all said and done, Montreal was left without any lethal weapons on offense, a slow aging defense, and a good goalie. Sweet! Not mentioned earlier, but after their 2017 first round exit, Montreal let longtime defensive stalwart, Andrei Markov walk to the KHL after 16 seasons in Montreal. They also failed to re-sign troubled forward, Alex Radulov after his stellar 2017 season. While he only played 1 season in Montreal, he was by far their most lethal scoring winger.
To top it off, to start off the 2018 Off-Season, Montreal traded away its best Center!
TRADE ALERT: The Montreal Canadiens have acquired Max Domi from the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for Alex Galchenyuk. pic.twitter.com/fdHXyhxZdR
Good lord, what an abortion of a trade. Alex Galchenyuk was drafted 3rd overall in the 2012 NHL Draft by Montreal. Throughout his time there, Chucky was always scrutinized by the organization, and fans alike. He was a very talented player, with potential to become the Habs Number 1 Center. Problem with that is, the Canadiens refused to play him at Center. He was forced to play on the wing for Michel Therrien, and Claude Julien. After posting 30 goals, 26 assists, and 56 points in 2015-2016, he has not been the same.
The Habs decided to trade him for yet another winger in Max Domi. Domi was picked 12th overall in the 2013 NHL Draft. After posting 18 goals, 34 assists, and 52 points in his rookie year, Domi hasn’t surpassed 9 goals in either of the past two seasons. Domi scored 9 goals in 2017-18, 4 of which were empty netters. The most Center desperate team traded it’s best Center option, for a winger who can’t score more than 9 goals. Ole indeed.
Now it’s all about acquiring picks and prospects for whatever they might have of value. Look for Max Pacioretty to be traded in the near future. Patches will be a UFA by the end of the season, and the Habs will either be re-signing him or trading him by the trade deadline.
This second point is unlikely, but I will try and make it work. I would think if the Habs are going to trade away Patches to rebuild, Carey Price would be on the block. Now, another huge misstep made by Marc Bergevin was the contract extension he handed to Price. Last Off-Season saw Price sign an 8 year, $84 million dollar contract extension. That is good for $10.5 million dollars a year. YIKES. Carey Price is a great goalie, but no goalie is worth that kind of money. Ever.
So, let us all bask in, and enjoy the demise of Les Habitants. I am not satisfied with how bad they are. I need more. I need the Canadiens to lose so much, they are relocated. Fuck this sorry fan-base, team, and everything that goes into it. You all SUCK, and you have been one of the worst teams in the NHL since 1993. Enjoy being the laughingstock of the NHL for the foreseeable future, because I sure will.
July 1st came and went in the NHL, and it was quite an eventful week or so leading up with John Tavares exploring the open market. The Bruins made their pitch to the prized Center, but he decided to go home to Toronto. Good for him getting to live a childhood dream. Counting down the days until the Toronto Media fakes a daily trip to hot dog cart, like they did with Phil Kessel. The Leafs haven’t won a cup since the fucking 60’s, yet they have the most obnoxious fans, and media coverage. The Bruins have 2-3 beat writers covering the team, Toronto has around 15. There is an extreme amount of pressure from the fans, and media up there. It almost never works out, and I cannot wait for the stories, and or turmoil that come with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
As for the Isles, I really feel for those fans. They haven’t had much to cheer about since the clock struck 1990. I wouldn’t say they were the worst team in the NHL from 1990-2018, but they are right up there. I understand the fans anger and frustration with John. I would be fuming if a player like that left the Bruins, especially after John repeatedly reinforced his love for the Island, and the Organization with the media. This seems to be a huge source of anger for the Islander fans. “HE SAID HE LOVED IT HERE, HE WAS LYING!!!!!!!!”. No shit morons, he’s not going to say “We’re a fucking joke, Garth Snow is incompetent, Charles Wang moved us off the Island, in 2019 we’ll play games in Brooklyn and Long Island. I want to leave here I hate it”. The anger shouldn’t be directed at John, he gave 9 seasons to a joke of a franchise. You forced Corey Conacher on his line for 15 games in 2014:
John Tavares earned $16 million dollars from the Colorado Avalanche for career Journeyman, P.A. Parenteau. In 2010-11 Parenteau was brought onto Long Island after only playing 27 total NHL games in nearly 7 full seasons.
Boom goes the dynamite. These two seasons riding on JT’s hip was parlayed into a 4 year $16 million dollar contract with Colorado in 2013. He lasted only 2 seasons out of the 4 he signed for, was traded to Montreal, and was bought out heading into the final year of his contract. He’s bounced around team to team ever since, and he announced his retirement just a few weeks ago.
If crappy/journeyman linemates weren’t enough, the Islanders don’t have a home. In 2015 the Islanders left their long-time home, Nassau Coliseum for the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn. The arena was a complete, and utter dump at the time they left, but it was still a great arena. The fans were fucking nuts when the Islanders were actually good. But the team couldn’t get approval for a new Arena in Nassau. As we know this move has sucked the life out of the Islanders, and their loyal fans. The Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn is a joke.
To make matters worse, the Barclay’s Center kicked the Islanders out! Leaving them homeless for the 2018-2019 season. An agreement was eventually set where the Islanders would split games between Brooklyn and the (renovated?) Nassau Coliseum for the next THREE seasons. What a joke. An NHL franchise without a home arena. Last I checked Air Canada Centre is the Leafs home, and will likely be the Leafs home for the foreseeable future. These are just a few of the reasons why I believe Tavares left. He’s played with many crappy players, and the organization overall is a mess. Sure they hired Lou Lamorillo and Barry Trotz this off-season, but too little too late. Shouldn’t have waited to make these types of moves until the last minute. They had 9 seasons to hire a competent GM, coach, and have a stable fucking Arena. Sooner or later enough is enough. I just feel like Islanders fans are miss-directing their anger, this is 100% on the organization.
Look for the Islanders to probably suck again this year (They’d have a lot of work to do if Tavares stayed). They have the rookie of the year winner in Mat Barzal. This kid has all the skill in the world, and was a great compliment to John Tavares as their second line center. Now he’ll have to be the guy. A lot of pressure for the kid, and I hope it’s not too soon for him to take the leap. While he won rookie of the year, he largely was playing behind Tavares with and against worse competition. Doesn’t make him any less nasty, but it is a factor. John takes the best defenders, and forwards from the opposition night in night out.
There are a few decent pieces in the forward group from which to build on despite no JT. Josh Bailey is coming off a career year in which he registered 71 points on 18 goals, and 53 assists.
Anders Lee is another Islander forward coming off a career year. He registered 40 goals and 22 assists for 62 total points. He had himself a fucking year, despite the team going down the crapper during the second half of the season.
These are the forwards they’ll have to build around. Obviously, no one is going to replace JT right away, but these are the guys that I would build my team around. It’ll take a miracle to find another Center in the ilk of John Tavares. That would likely have to come through the NHL Draft. Maybe Barzal fills the shoes, but it is a lot of pressure. Part of me see’s the speedy, shifty, smaller Barzal as a perfect compliment to a big bruising two way center like Tavares. I feel like Barzal is destined to be a really fucking good second line center. Time will tell.
The NHL Draft, at least the beginning of it saw the Islanders “Win the draft”. They had two first round selections (11 and 12). They drafted Oliver Wahlstrom from the US National Development Program. Bruins fans might actually remember this dude:
With the 12th pick they took Noah Dobson, a Defenseman from the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. Don’t know too much about the kid, but everything I am reading sounds good. He’s fairly tall at 6’3, is a good skater, and is productive at both ends of the ice. Might need to put on some weight to deal with the NHL, as he is only 176 lbs.
It is going to be a long year for the Islanders, but I thought they would still suck with Tavares. They have a poor Defense Corps (Boychuk, De Haan, Seidenberg LOL, Pelech, Pulock, Mayfield, Aho, Etc.) Bunch of JAGS. They have some solid puck movers in Pulock and De Haan, but De Haan has two feet out the door already. Boychuk is being paid as a top pairing Defenseman, but he’s a number 3 Defenseman at best. Their starting goalie, Jaroslav Halak, who is average at best, left the Islanders for Boston to be Tuukka Rask’s backup on July 1st. A lot of holes to fill on this roster, and not enough time. Lets hope the John Tavares decision doesn’t push this organization down a deeper, darker hole. A team with such GORGEOUS uniforms, and colors cannot be this bad.
It’s been a while since we talked Bruins, even longer since we talked at all. We are smack dab in the middle of the NHL Off-Season. Last week started it all off with the NHL Entry Draft. The Buffalo Sabres finally caught a damn break, and won the Draft Lottery. They used the number 1 pick on Swedish Defenseman Rasmus Dahlin.
I don’t want to focus on the NHL draft, but just know this kid is going to dominate. He’s a top end Defenseman, who can play at an elite level in both ends. It might take time to develop, but he will be amazing. Buffalo has a plethora of top-end young talent. Eichel, Ristolainen, Sam Reinhart, Ryan O’Reilly, and now Dahlin. Don’t forget Casey Mittlestadt another top end prospect. Buffalo, headed in the right direction for eternity.
Now, to the real story here. John Tavares, the Number 1 overall selection in the 2009 NHL draft is set to become an Unrestricted Free Agent on July 1st. For much of his time in Long Island and Brooklyn the Isles have sucked. He’s only made the playoffs three times in 9 total seasons. He’s only made it to the second round once, and his Isles were bounced in 5 games. All of that doesn’t matter. John Tavares is a fantastic hockey player. He’s lived up to every bit of the number 1 overall tag. Stats speak from themselves. 4-time 30 goal scorer, scored 28 goals in the lockout shortened season, and even put up a solid 6g-5a-11pts in his only half decent run with the Islanders. To go along with the goal scoring ability, John is not as good but in the same ballpark as Patrice Bergeron defensively, and in the Face-off Circle. This is what Baseball weenies would call a five tool player.
2018 was yet another disastrous season on the Ice for the Islanders. They failed to qualify for the postseason, General Manager Garth Snow stepped down, and Head Coach Doug Weight was axed. Dusty fossil, Lou Lamorillo was hired as GM to replace Snow. Lamorillo was the original GM of the New Jersey Devils, and most recently helped rebuild in Toronto (It was done for him by the time he got there). Most recently, Barry Trotz was named the teams new Head Coach just a week after winning the cup with the Washington Capitals.
Those hires are great for the fans as it gives them hope. For me, Lamorillo didn’t do dick in Toronto (how hard is it to draft Auston Matthews?). Most other pieces were in place for him, but he still had massive holes along the Blueline that he never filled. For a playoff team, that d corps up in Toronto was just horrendous. In New Jersey, Lamorillo built a juggernaut that competed for cups from the mid 90’s to mid 00’s. After that? Mediocrity. Since 2003 the Devils have been mediocre at best. They made a cup run in 2012, but lost in 5 games to the LA Kings. From that point on, the Devils iced some of the most boring, untalented hockey teams I have ever seen. Overall Lou will bring some stability to the Isles front office, and he certainly won’t be worse than Mike Millbury, or Garth Snow. I just don’t know that Lou has his fastball anymore. These two additions certainly would show Tavares that the Islanders mean business in turning this thing around, but that didn’t stop him from using this week to listen to a pitch from 5 teams. I hadn’t been keeping tabs on it, as I just figured why on earth would he come to Boston? The Bruins ownership are cheap pricks, they NEVER sign big money guys.
Sure enough, Monday Morning saw the Bruins, San Jose Sharks, Toronto Maple Leaves, Tampa Bay Lightning, and New York Islanders all be listed as teams he would meet with in LA. At first, I said, “No Cap room” WRONG. Tavares will command probably the second highest per year salary in the NHL. McDavid makes $12.5 million, and Tavares would command around $11. The Bruins have $12 million free at this very moment, out they would be able to sign Tavares and NOT be forced into making any moves if they want to. This is unlikely, as they would definitely have to move on from a hefty contract like David Krejci, David Backes, or both. They have some young guns that will need to be re-signed after their rookie deals (McAvoy, Donato, BeBrusk, Heinen).
Hearing lots of chatter today that #NHLBruins have already approached forwards David Krejci and David Backes about their NMC and list of teams with one speculating that Krejci was asked prior to 2018 NHL Trade Deadline. #Tavares
Now, do I think John Tavares will sign with the Boston Bruins? Probably not. John is likely just doing his due diligence while mulling the extension with the Islanders. But I do think if he were to leave Long Island, the Bruins have a damn good shot. The Bruins have a perfect mix of veteran talent under contract for multiple seasons, and young up and coming pieces that should help the Bruins contend for many years. You got Marchand locked up for 8 years at only $6 million per season, Pastrnak is locked up for 5 more years at $6.6 million, and Bergeron is locked in for 4 years at $6.8. The key pieces would not have to be moved. Sure some maneuvering would need to be done, but that is more than ok.
John Tavares is flying back to New York today, but currently has no further meetings scheduled with the New York Islanders.