At some point, chemistry becomes secondary. The familiarity of taking the ice with the same players turns from an advantage into more of a state of comfort and the minute that happens, things change.
Things have changed.
For the past few years, you’ve heard about the core of the Boston Bruins. You’ve heard about the advantages of their built-in chemistry, the camaraderie in the locker room, the deep lineup. You’ve heard all of it. But with the recent rash of departures from guys like Andrew Ference, Nathan Horton, Tyler Seguin, and Rich Peverley, it’s obvious that things will be different for the 2013-14 Bruins next season.
And that’s not exactly a bad thing.
With a record of 20-7-3, the Boston Bruins are currently sitting in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, two points back of the division leading Montreal Canadiens (with a game in hand), and second only to the Pittsburgh Penguins in terms of goal differential (+22.)
With only a scant 18 games left to play in a shortened season, one would think that the Bruins would be a confident bunch heading down the stretch. Below the surface, however, there is cause for concern, and the Bruins have some work to do in the last week of March to avoid going into April looking more like lambs than lions.
The Boston Bruins are having a strange season. Strange in the sense that they’re considered a “struggling” team even with a top-five record in the NHL and strange in the sense that their once-sound defensive game is suddenly filled with cracks.
In conversations, columns and general musings, it has been difficult to classify this team. The Bruins have yet to really dominate a game but in the same breath, they haven’t exactly been bowled over either. They’ve made some pretty incredible comebacks but yet can’t hold a third period lead at times. Some players have looked elite at times while managing to disappear completely during stretches as well. We’ve been waiting for the team to take it to the next gear and finally break through for 30 games now. They haven’t.
It’s bad but it’s also not bad. Strange, right?
With the trade deadline less than two weeks away, it’s imperative that Peter Chiarelli add to the Bruins roster because the current team isn’t going to do much in the playoffs. But what does the team need to be successful? Glad you asked.