Like everyone else, I was feeling confident about the Bruins after their opening night win against the Predators. Who am I kidding? I had them in the Eastern Conference Finals. With five rookies in the opening night lineup, they took the play to the Western conference champions all night. Jake Debrusk scored an impressive goal for his first of what looks like many. Anders Bjork was all over the ice, registering an assist and generating plenty of chances. Charlie McAvoy picked up right where he left off, and appears to be an early favorite for the Calder. The rookies put David Krejci in the DeLorean. Krejci looked young again–registering three assists and easily keeping up with his faster, younger linemates.
Then something happened while I was planning the Duck Boat parade: The Bruins reminded us how frustrating they can be, and zapped us right back into reality. With three days off between games one and two, they looked like the “youth-movement Bruins” most expected to see. Mental mistakes and missed passes made the goaltender’s job easy, all adding up to an abysmal 4-0 defeat for the home team. Even Tuukka Rask looked like a rookie today, badly playing a puck outside his net and easily beaten.
I realize the Bruins mysteriously struggled against the Avalanche at home, but there wasn’t much to take from today’s “effort.” They looked as though they really enjoyed the long fall weekend – pumpkin beer, spiked cider, apple picking, the whole nine yards. Once again they were without Patrice Bergeron, who after today’s game, can’t get back in the lineup soon enough. Great to see Torey Krug back on the ice after a long layoff. But he looked rusty and will most likely need a couple of games to get up to speed.
There is still much to learn about the 2017-18 Boston Bruins. Class begins Wednesday night in Colorado. Did I overreact after Thursday night’s game? Maybe. But I reserve the right to dust off my parade plans if we see more what we saw Thursday night and less of what we saw Monday.