The Bruins are virtually the same team coming in from last year’s playoff team, minus Glenn Murray.
With new faces in Michael Ryder, Stefane Yelle, a healthy Bergeron and rookie Blake Wheeler, the B’s have more to work with.
The team that nearly dismantled the class of the Eastern Conference in Montreal last postseason is well set to have a successful season. All the components are there.
Things have been slow at first, with overtime games against Pittsburgh, Montreal, and Buffalo, the Bruins were having trouble in the first few weeks.
The problem wasn’t holding off tough offense. It was finishing plays in the opposition’s zone.
Against Pittsburgh, Bergeron had trouble putting the puck into the net. At one point he had a break away right in front of the net only to slip at the last second.
Likewise, the Bruins gave up goals to Montreal in a matter of minutes. They played great for most of the night, taking it to a shoot-out in the end, but those few minutes cost them.
As hard as these moments have been to stomach, it is still just the beginning of November. Though the Bruins are still finding their legs, they have a lot of positives.
Who can complain about Phil Kessel’s six goals? Talk about an offensive leader.
Savard has five, as well. Milan Lucic is having a tremendous start this season, earning his first hat trick against Atlantalast week. When Chuck Kobasew returns from his injury and Bergeron settles back into NHL play, the offense should get rolling.
The goalie problem hasn’t quite been solved quite yet, but Thomas looks great in goal. Nothing is better for a goalie than back-to-back shutouts.
Vancouver is having a slow start in last place, but the west coast win was still huge for Boston.
If the Bruins want to compete, they need to score for Thomas.
Buffalo should slow down by the All-Star break.
Saturday night they host Dallas (4-5), who are coming in from a big loss in Chicago and could be rattled.
Expect the Bruins to bump their game up a notch.
Or at least hope that they do!