A Question for the Boston Bruins: Where Has All the Offense Gone?
After just watching the Bruins get shutout for the second straight game, I feel the question has to be asked. Where has all the offense gone?
Last year, the Bruins had one of the best offenses in the league, scoring 270 goals for second best in the league averaging 3.29 goals for a game. The pp was also good at 23.6 percent, best for fourth in the league. They also had six 20-goal scorers.
This year, the Bruins have done a complete 180. Through their first 13 games, they have scored a total of just 31 goals, good enough for 27th in the league and have the worst pp scoring 11.5 percent of the time. In the eight games the Bruins have lost, they have scored one goal or less in six of them. This year, their leading goal scorers are Patrice Bergeron and Blake Wheeler, with four goals each.
There can be many different excuses for why this has happened. The first is the fact that the B's traded their No. 1 goal scorer last year Phil Kessel to the Toronto Maple Leafs. Kessel scored 36 goals to lead the Bruins. While he put up some great numbers a big reason was because of the playmaking abilities of Marc Savard. So this is not the reason why the Bruins are slumping as much as they are.
A second reason would be the losses of Marc Savard and Milan Lucic. Both were lost earlier in the year to injuries and won't be back for at least another 10-15 games. Savard is the Bruins best playmaker finishing with 63 assists last year. Losing him really hurt the Bruins because he could make the pass that no one else could on the team.
Lucic was a guy who could make the huge hit that would turn the game around and really get the crowd into it. He could also grind it out and put up goals as well. While these are huge losses, I don't feel that they are the reason that the B's are struggling to find the net as badly as they are either.
The real reason why the Bruins have struggled to score so much is the fact that they just aren't getting enough pucks on net. During the pp this year, they have not been putting enough shots on net. They continuously circle the net, passing around looking for that one perfect shot.
If there is anything we have learned while watching hockey it's that you have to get as many pucks on the net as you can since anything can happen when it is shot into a pile. It could careem in off of a body or another player's stick or take a funny bounce right to another player, who just has to put it into the back of the net.
If the Bruins want to get back on the winning track, they have to take as many shots as they can. Even if they aren't on the net, if they can continue to put pressure on the opposing team, they make it more difficult for them and will eventually have them running around leaving guys open for a shot.
If they can do this, they will began to win games again and turn the season around.
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