“All in all, I think we like where we are,” said coach Bruce Cassidy. “We have played good, solid Bruins hockey, played according to our identity, built some young players into the mix here, which is doing well for us. Has not been dependent on a specific area of the game. ”
To take stock of the roster from an expectation-versus-performance point of view:
Nick Ritchie, LW: Seems to settle down in … Scores at almost a 30-goal, 60-point pace (5-5—10) … Was not drafted 10th overall for his mobility, but has brought some skill along with bulk.
Kevan Miller, D: Four knee surgeries, zero problems so far … Looks good for a player who missed 19 months of action … Slam-dunk Masterton Trophy nominated.
Brandon Carlo, D: Upper echelon defensive D, which can be dangerous when he thinks offensively … Both of his goals (2-1—3) were bricks in third periods.
Jeremy Lauzon, D: Hard-edged defender has improved skating and puck skills … Has not looked out of place next to Charlie McAvoy … The Bruins were wise to bet on his improvement.
Jaroslav Halak, G: Typically hot to start the season, his .938 save percentage is in third place among goalkeepers with three or more starts … Still losing in regulation (4-0-1, 1.38 GAA).
Patrice Bergeron, C: A great start to his captain: 7-11-18 and tied with Brad Marchand as fifth in the league scoring into Sunday … A break between career matches 1.103 and 1.104 can not be a bad thing.
Brad Marchand, LW: MVP caliber plays (also put Bergeron in that discussion) … Few can match his competition … Six of nine goals (9-9—18) in equal strength, a shorthand.
Charlie McAvoy, D: Few holes in his game (1-10—11 in 14 games) … Game drive, shutdown, defender No. 1 … Does not seem complacent … Average team height 24:19 time on ice.
David Krejci, C: Regardless of the wingers, he finds them … No goals, but 10 assists in 14 games.
Tuukka Rask, G: Not quite on top of his game (.906 save percentage, 6-2-1, 2.51 GAA).
Chris Wagner, RW and Sean Kuraly, C: Most nights where you effectively work the Bruins out of the defensive zone and keep the opponents’ scoring lines tied.
Connor Clifton, D: There in case of injury, but capable of full-time role … “Cliffy Hockey” means to throw the body, jump up in the piece.
Need to see more
David Pastrnak, RW: Still finding top gear after off-season hip surgery … Set up half of his points (3-2—5 out of 5-5—10) and all his goals in his second and third games left … None goals in his last four.
Matt Grzelcyk, D: Rest comes at a good time for many Bruins, Grzelcyk (lower body) included … Difference-maker reaches healthy.
Jake DeBrusk, LW: Two assists in nine games – and zero goals on 20 shots – does not cut it … Will always have more output from a player with his skating and skill … Fourth year in the league who gets plenty of offensive opportunity.
Charlie Coyle, C: Not a bad start, but has not been the puck possession monster … Some of this may be inconsistent line feeds.
Craig Smith, RW: Has delivered a little less than expected (three goals in 13 games), but solid enough… Has looked good on the third line with Coyle.
Jakub Zboril, D: Blink of offensive talent and have had a few strong outings … Still finding his footing at NHL level.
Anders Bjork, LW: Still unclear what he is: a complementary between-six-wing or a fast fourth-line forechecker? … Prone to mental errors that leave him on the bench.
Trent Frederic, LW: Team leader in penalties drawn (seven), but an ongoing work at. 5 on 5 … Offensive ceiling still TBD.
Ondrej Kase, RW: Czech for “crickets” … Has not played since January 16, after the last in a series of upper body injuries … Surprise: early returns on David Backes in Anaheim (13 games, 1-3—4) have been better than them at Kase in Boston (8 games, 0-1—1).
Jack Studnicka, RW: Got a taste of action before injury … Will work his way back from Providence … Baby steps for promising prospects.
Incomplete: John Moore, Par Lindholm, Anton Blidh, Karson Kuhlman.
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