NHL 2013-2014 Conference Previews – Atlantic – Boston Bruins

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Recently the Bs have both held the cup and come second in the running. Most organizations would consider any kind of significant change to be a risk not worth taking.

Chiarelli locked up P. Bergeron and T. Rask to long term deals but also let Nathan Horton (CBJ), Andrew Ference (EDM) and Jaromir Jagr (NJD) hit the open market and traded a former 2nd overall selection and brought in (finally?)  Jarome Iginla, if anyone remembers the drama last year.

Trading Tyler Seguin, along with Rich Peverley and Ryan Button, for Loui Eriksson, Reilly Smith, Joe Morrow, Matt Fraser, allows the Bs to maintain their goal to be a cup contender in the near future, Eriksson has shown high levels of talent on a weak Stars team over the last few years putting up 3 straight 70pt seasons given a full 82 game workload. Prospect J. Morrow gives the Bruins some depth to their aging blue line. Meanwhile, Smith and Fraser could develop but it can be expected this season they will be given bottom 6 minutes at most. Bringing in Jarome Iginla brings them a scoring winger who still has an incredible release and can be dangerous on either of the Bs top 2 lines.

In nets, Tuukka Rask has yet to play a full season as #1, his max GP was 45 in 09-10 but few would question, barring any injury, that he plays 60-70 games and keeps goaltending a non-issue

Overall it’s hard pressed to find areas of weakness in the Bruins. Yet, they’ve had trouble when it comes to scoring on the power play, and since 2010 they’ve only finished higher than 20th in the league once in that category. This statistic is nullified by their ability to kill penalties, a category in which they have finished lower than 15th only once.

The schedule works slightly in their favor as well.  Within their division, they play 5 games against both the Sabres and Panthers, who are expected to struggle this season. This gives the Bruins that slight edge over other teams fighting each other for the remaining division playoff spots.

 

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About CoachK

Kosta Papoulias has written 474 post in this blog.

Coach K is the producer of the Montreal Hockey Talk pre and post game shows, to which he is a regular contributor. His 15 years of coaching experience, along with his passion for the game, give him a unique perspective. You can follow Coach on Twitter @HabsCoachK

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