Boston Bruins right wing David Pastrnak (88), center, celebrate after scoring his goal against the Chicago Blackhawks in the first period of the NHL Winter Classic hockey game at Notre Dame Stadium, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019, in South Bend, Ind. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Editorial: Bruins Bye Week is Over, so Let’s Assess the Team’s Current Situation

By: Andrew Parker

The Bruins had a 10-day break between games, and it has been a long wait for some more NHL hockey. The NHL has added a bye week, which I am sure the players love. Take a look at what a couple of the Bruins were doing on their ten-day vacation.

Bruins Bye Week is Over, so Let's Assess the Team's Current Situation
Photo via: David Pastrnak/Instagram

David Pastrnak was enjoying himself in Cabo before making his trip to San Jose for the All-Star Game. Charlie McAvoy, Danton Heinen, and Sean Kuraly all enjoyed a nice beach view as well as seen below.

Bruins Bye Week is Over, so Let's Assess the Team's Current Situation
Photo via: Charlie McAvoy/Instagram

The All-Star game has come and gone, with David Pastrnak being the only one chosen to represent the Bruins in San Jose this past weekend. Therefore, the rest of the team got a much needed break. The Bruins were a very injured squad in the first half, with key guys like Chara, Bergeron, Debrusk, Miller, Nordstrom, and McAvoy all on the shelf for some period of time. One could say that the injury bug struck the Bruins hard.

We have not really been able to see what this team will look like at full health. Key components have missed time making Bruce Cassidy juggle his lines, making it hard to establish true chemistry between line mates. Establishing a consistent four line combo has been Cassidy’s hardest task since taking over behind the bench over a season ago.

Coming off a 10-day break, lets break down the current situation of the Boston Bruins by seeing what will really be needed out of some particular players in order to make a potentially deep playoff run.

Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-David Pastrnak

Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-David Pastrnak
Photo via: Stuart Cahill/Boston Herald

This line is also referred to as the “Perfection Line” and for a good reason. The chemistry this line has had together is second to none. Last season, this line combined for more points than any other line in the NHL. If Bergeron hadn’t gotten hurt this year and missed a month of action, they would probably be in the same exact position. You know what you can expect from this line night in and night out.

The only real question here is…can they carry the entire team like they did last year?

It got them through the first round of playoffs against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Relying on this front line seemed to be the game plan for that series. We will need to see the second line step up big and support this so called “Perfection Line.”

Peter Cehlarik

Peter Cehlarik, Boston Bruins
Photo via: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

Peter Cehlarik is next in line in the constantly revolving door of wingers on the second line. The 2013 3rd round pick was the latest to be called up to get a crack at solidifying himself as the missing winger opposite of David Krejci and Jake Debrusk. This task has previously gone through Anders Bjork, Heinen, Backes, and Ryan Donato already this season.

The initial results? Not too bad at all.

Cehlarik made his season debut back on January 16th after absolutely lighting up the AHL this season. The call-up paid off in the very first game against Philadelphia, where he potted two goals. He has three points in the three games that he has suited up for the black and gold this season and if he can keep up a point per game trend, we may have found ourselves a legitimate candidate at securing that last spot in the top six.

Goaltending

Tuukka Rask. Boston Bruins.
Photo via: Boston Globe

For the Bruins fans out there that were EVER thinking for the slightest moment that Tuukka Rask was not the number 1 goaltender in Boston…

I have a strong case for you.

Tuukka Rask did in fact struggle out of the gates this year, but has recovered very nicely down the stretch. Tuukka is 8-2-0 in his last 10 starts and his numbers have been trending up.

Tuuka Rask vs Jaroslav Halak

Rask was far behind Jaroslav Halak after the first couple of months, but has regained his course of being an elite goaltender again. Halak has played well as a backup this year and as we all know, he is nothing more than a sturdy backup to Rask. For this team to succeed, they will need Tuukka to stay at the elite level where we know he can play.

Cover photo via: AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh

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Andrew Parker
About Andrew Parker 30 Articles
Andrew attended the University of Missouri, where he spent time working for ESPNU and the SEC Network on gamedays. He co-hosted the Boston Sports Weekly podcast with Nick from 2016-2018. He also spent time working with CBS Radio St. Louis. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewwParkerr.

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