In this edition of Boston Bruins’ News & Rumors, Jack Studnicka will likely get a favorable lineup spot in the Bruins’ exhibition game against the Columbus Blue Jackets, an update on David Pastrnak’s status for that game and the Bruins have announced their plans to lock arms during the National Anthems.
Jack Studnicka Likely to Skate Alongside David Krejci
During the 2019-20 season, Studnicka would spend the vast majority of his time with the Providence Bruins. This wasn’t an indication that he wasn’t ready to play at the NHL level, but instead, it was a calculated move by the Bruins to use their current NHL depth to fill roles while allowing Studnicka the chance to learn and grow within the system before making the full-time jump.
It’s no secret that the Bruins are very high on Studnicka, and this is true from management to coaching and all the way down to the players.
In a Zoom meeting Monday, Patrice Bergeron would rave about just how good Studnicka is and how much he’s improved just from training camp to present day.
“I think he’s a very good player, very talented,” Bergeron said of Studnicka. “It’s pretty amazing seeing him from training camp to now — he’s taken a huge step forward. He seems to just be getting better, got stronger also. His speed — he seems to be getting faster, which is scary. Very good player, smart, seems to play the right way.”
Fast forward to the NHL postseason and Studnicka could now find himself reaping the rewards of being patient and continuing to hone his craft. When the Bruins take on the Blue Jackets on Thursday in their exhibition game, Studnicka appears to be the most likely player to skate alongside David Krejci on the Bruins’ second line.
Studnicka got an opportunity to play in two regular season games in Boston this season and he’d record his first career-point against the Montreal Canadiens. He exhibited tremendous skill, speed, confidence and intelligence in those games and he’s likely to get an expanded look Thursday.
So far, Krejci has liked what he’s seen as well.
This could also determine if he’s ready to play when the playoffs actually begin, as well.
David Pastrnak Likely to Play Thursday
For most players, the NHL’s plan to restart when smoothly without any sort of issues along the way. Unfortunately for Pastrnak, the NHL’s co-leading goal-scorer from the 2019-20 season, that wasn’t the case.
The 24-year-old would have to spend an additional 14 days during quarantine as he and teammate Ondrej Kase skated with other hockey players prior to the end of the 14 days.
Pastrnak wasn’t able to practice with the Bruins at any point prior to their trip to Toronto to enter the bubble. This was obviously less than ideal for both Pastrnak and the Bruins are they looked to get back on track as quickly as they could.
“First off, I was never sick so I don’t think I did anything wrong,” Pastrnak said. “So, it was a tough bounce there and unfortunately after what happened I had to miss some time, obviously the protocol is to stay in quarantine, so unfortunately I had to be at home for a while, it’s nothing I can control.”
Still, Pastrnak did express that he was apologetic for the incident and took responsibility for his actions.
“Obviously, I take full responsibility for my actions and I am sorry but [like] I said, I’m glad I’m back, I feel good out there.”
Now that Pastrnak has skated with his teammates and the team prepares to take on the Blue Jackets on Thursday, there’s a good chance No. 88 will skate in that contest.
Pastrnak was electric this past season and assuming he picks up right where he left off, it’s hard to imagine he won’t be a major contributor during this playoff run.
Bruins to Lock Arms During National Anthems
The Bruins released a statement from their players Tuesday that would state that the team has worked towards educating themselves over the last few months and plans on showing solidarity towards the Black community.
To do so, the team intends on locking arms during the singing of both the Canadian and United States National Anthems.
Over the past several months, we have been trying to educate ourselves and learn more about racial injustice in our country and around the world. As a team we have decided to lock arms during the playing of the United States and Canadian Anthems as a sign of solidarity with the Black community.
This action is solely intended to be a positive sign of support for the Black community, and a way for us to use our platform to help end racism.
Given the current climate of the world and the need for social change, the NHL seems to be finally taking steps in the right direction to figuring out the problems that exist and working towards eliminating them.
Though this gesture may not create change in and of itself, it’s the least teams can do to demonstrate that they are willing to listen and that they stand by those who have been oppressed and alienated for far too long.
Education is the first step to improving in this area. Seeing teams make these public gestures to show solidarity is a good next step.
Brandon Share-Cohen has covered the NHL and various professional sports for seven years. Working with The Hockey Writers, Brandon works extensively on covering the Boston Bruins in addition to his role as the News Team Lead.