The Boston Bruins have the second-best points streak in the franchise history behind them. Now it’s time to look ahead for new challenges. But so far, these challenges are very difficult to overcome for the Bruins. However, there is no reason to panic for them, yet.
It’s the typical deja-vu for the Bruins. They start to heat up and play some great hockey down the stretch, but at the most important time, they lose half of their team due to the injuries. Just 10 days ago, they had only defenseman Kevan Miller and forward David Pastrnak injured. In a game against the Hurricanes last week, the Bruins lost Marcus Johansson and Jake DeBrusk.
In their last two games in Pittsburgh and Columbus, the Bruins have lost defensemen Matt Grzelcyk and Torey Krug. As of now, the Bruins are without Pastrnak, Miller, DeBrusk, Grzelcyk, Krug, and Johansson. The Bruins are so desperate that head coach Bruce Cassidy promoted David Backes to the top line role alongside Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron.
As the Bruins have lost two games in a row, the Toronto Maple Leafs repeated the feat and dropped both of their home games. The Bruins have held their slim four-point lead heading to the game against the Jets in Winnipeg later tonight.
Last season, the Bruins experienced the very same story. They will face the Columbus Blue Jackets at TD Garden on Saturday, March 16. A year ago, the Bruins hosted the Jackets at TD Garden on March 19. During that game, when Ryan Donato made his NHL debut, Boston was missing Patrice Bergeron, David Backes, Jake DeBrusk, Charlie McAvoy and Zdeno Chara. Shortly afterward, they recovered Bergeron, Chara, and McAvoy, but lost Brandon Carlo, Riley Nash, and Rick Nash.
Closest to return are Matt Grzelcyk, Torey Krug and Jake DeBrusk. They should return next week. The Bruins have to wait a bit more with Johansson, Pastrnak, and Miller. And that’s a bummer. The Bruins simply have to go to the playoffs with their roster fully healthy. Yes or yes. Last season, the injuries came at an unfortunate time. In 2017, we all remember how the Bruins used defenseman Tommy Cross as their 10th defensive option overall.
With 12 games yet to be played in the season, there are two focus points for the Bruins left. Firstly, get fully healthy headed to the playoffs. Secondly, hold on that second spot before Toronto. The Bruins have three more weeks to tune up for the playoffs. There is no reason to panic. At least yet.