The Boston Bruins are, once again, one of the most interesting teams in the National Hockey League. In 2022-23, they broke the record for most wins and points in NHL history. It was one of the greatest regular-season teams ever.
Coming into this year, however, things were expected to be different. The Bruins lost Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci to retirement. They were their top two centers still playing at an extremely high level.
Usually, when you lose your top two centers for whatever reason, you get a lot of cap relief. That wasn’t the case for the Bruins with Bergeron and Krejci because they were both older players making very little money relative to their production on the ice.
Well, a few additions were made with the little cap space they did have and it is all working out so far. They have the best record in the Eastern Conference at 8-0-1. Only the Vegas Golden Knights have more points at 9-0-1 but they have the extra game played. Those are the only two teams that haven’t lost in regulation.
The Boston Bruins are one of the best teams in the NHL at this point.
The Bruins’ most recent win came on Monday. It was against a hot Florida Panthers team that also eliminated them in the playoffs last year. It wasn’t looking good when the Panthers scored two goals in the first period to take a 2-0 lead. Aleksander Barkov and Sam Reinhart had the tucks.
Brad Marchand scored in the second period to bring the Bruins within one. At that point, it felt like the Bruins had a chance in this game. In the third period, Charlie McAvoy tied it with his second goal of the season.
Once the game got to overtime, Pavel Zacha found himself coming down the wing with the puck and he did not miss on his one shot. The Bruins took the 3-2 comeback victory in overtime. It was a tremendous game.
Charlie McAvoy update
Not long after tying the game on Monday, Charlie McAvoy did something he regrets. He hit Florida defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson in the head. As a result of this poor decision, McAvoy was suspended by the NHL Department of Player Safety for four games.
This is a tough loss for the Boston Bruins as McAvoy is their number-one defenseman. He is also one of the five best defensemen in the NHL right now. This is a very bad hit and one that needs to not happen in the NHL.
You can tell that McAvoy didn’t feel good about it afterward. Sometimes, people make bad decisions and have to pay for them. He will sit for four games and hopefully learn a lesson from this. You just can’t knock guys in the head.
The Boston Bruins confirmed on Tuesday that rookie Matthew Poitras is going to stay with the NHL club. There was a possibility that he would return to his junior club but that will not be the case.
They had to decide if they were going to let him get beyond the nine-game threshold and use up his first entry-level year. The other option was to send him back to the Guelph Storm of the OHL. He is probably very happy to be a full-time NHL player starting now.
Without Bergeron and Krejci, the Bruins needed their centers to step up. Pavel Zacha and Charlie Coyle are there too but Poitras has been amazing. He was a second-round pick in 2022 and now he is playing in the NHL. He should be very proud.
It started to become obvious that this was a possibility about halfway through the preseason as he just kept sticking around because of how well he was playing. Now, through nine regular season games, he has three goals and two assists for five points.
As the year goes on, he will certainly start to rack up the points even more and possibly even be in the Calder Trophy mix.
He is already in the early conversation which is impressive considering Connor Bedard, Luke Hughes, Logan Cooley, Adam Fantilli, and Leo Carlsson are all playing so well. We can only hope that the kid continues making an impact.
The Boston Bruins’ next match will take place on Thursday night when they host the Toronto Maple Leafs. This amazing rivalry will be one of the top NHL games of that night and should be incredibly entertaining.
The Leafs will certainly want to bring their best against the Bruins so Boston needs to be ready to counter that. It should be a lot of fun.