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Good evening ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the first Days of Y’Orr recap!
Everyone sitting in the first ten rows will be given a poncho because you will be sitting in the “sploosh zone” and this game has given this writer many things to sploosh about. Should you get any in your mouth, please gargle bleach and spit it out immediately. Please call chemical control.
Raise your hand if this was the type of home opener you expected?
I can’t vouch for you all reading this, but what I expected was a closely fought game with the Bruins coming out on the shit end of the stick. When I factored in no Bergeron, Backes or Krug – I thought the shit end of the stick would also be covered with bees.
Instead, the Bruins came out and played like a hockey team that was looking to make a statement and they did it behind a group of guys who can’t legally buy alcohol yet.
It’s only one game and all of these guys are more-than-likely going to hit the rookie wall, but for one game they all looked fucking incredible. Jake Debrusk, Charlie McAvoy and Anders Bjork seemed to be everywhere and seemed to do (mostly) everything right.
It wasn’t just the young kids either. For the first time in this millennium, David Krejci looked like a guy worth $7.25M per season. We’ve said on “The Optional Skate” that David Krejci is a player who won’t make his line-mates great, but rather be made great by his line-mates.
Tonight we were wrong.
The Bruins opened the game with their foot on the gas pedal and never seemed to give it up. Even after a late first period goal – something that could effect the psyche of a team – the Bruins pushed that pedal down as far as they could and came away with a victory.
It’s also a little slight against Nashville because Nashville is supposed to be better than that. Last two minutes in the third period aside, the Predators didn’t seem to take the fight to the Bruins. Maybe that’s more of a compliment to Boston, but Nashville didn’t look like the Stanley Cup darlings we saw in May and June.
In fact, it’s almost as if the Predators are average, something they were in most statistical categories before getting hot in the post-season.
Even when the Predators came roaring back with two goals late int he third, the game never felt in doubt. It was a breath of fresh air on a Bruins season many of us will smell. They may be a bubble playoff team, but tonight they looked lights out.
There’s going to be a lot here so grab a cup of tea or coffee or whatever you’re drinking.
Before he scored his goal, Jake DeBrusk was having himself a wonderful game. Even if he didn’t put the puck in the back of the net, that’s a game that shows you the type of player DeBrusk could be in the NHL. After the goal?
Well, that’s the icing on the cake my friend.
What DeBrusk does well on this goal that the Bruins lacked last season was the actual drive to the net. There’s an old hockey saying: “Go towards the net and good things will happen”. DeBrusk, unknowing if he’s going to be involved or not, keeps going towards the net and Krejci has the presence of mind to give it to him.
It wasn’t easy for DeBrusk, but boy was it slick. The celebration after too. SWOOOOOOON.
McAvoy scored the first NHL goal of his career. While the shot was nice (and he stole it from Anders Bjork), the more impressive part of that rush was the Bruins being 4 on 2. I can’t tell you the last time the Bruins had numbers on a rush. It feels like forever ago.
So Boston initially has three on a rush and McAvoy time travels out of nowhere and fires off a howitzer past Rinne.
This is going to be a nitpick, but I felt McAvoy was fighting the puck a lot tonight. Maybe it was a case of the yips or maybe it was a case of some really shitty ice. One of my awesome followers, @WNee17, mentioned guys losing edges part way through the second period. After that, it did seem like guys were falling left and right.
McAvoy had his missteps and a bad penalty, but overall his night went very well.
[Insert Bjork’s face on singer Bjork here]
We really need to get some photoshops of these young kids.
Bjork was quieter than the two other playpen friends, but he was just as effective. What’s not going to show up on the score sheet is how fucking silky his mitts are. He had a few nice no-look, touch passes that require the type of finesse Boston has missed.
When/If he’s paired with Bergeron and Marchand, there could be some real fireworks.
Okay, will the real David Krejci please stand up?
I don’t think anyone expected this type of showing from David Krejci. Krejci and the Kids line was pumping on all cylinders and they had their way with any defender the Predators could throw at them. What made everything better is exactly what I stated earlier: Krejci seemed to make his line-mates better, not the other way around.
Maybe Krejci has taken to heart that he is now one of the elder statesmen of this hockey team. He’s no longer a spring chicken and I’m sure his grandma hips are telling him that. He could have folded and people may have said “Well, he’s with rookies, what do you expect?” but it was the complete opposite.
Krejci’s passes seemed to have a little something more behind them. Even more telling that Krejci was feeling it tonight? His face-off percentage was…
You couldn’t see it, but I did that hand gesture that chefs do when their food is dope as fuck. You know the one because you’re doing it right now.
His face-off percentage was 77% tonight. This is coming from a guy who’s career face-off percentage is 50.6%. That’s when you know a guy is dialed in.
Honestly, this is going to be some real nitpicky shit I think.
The Bruins D wasn’t great tonight and their penalty kill in the last two minutes of the game was fucking abysmal. Filip Forsberg’s goal was horrendous. If you pause the tape (lol, tape) when Forsberg scores, there’s 6 Predators and 2 Bruins.
There were times early in the game where it seemed Nashville had all the puck control, but Tuukka Rask was on point.
Again, nitpicky shit.
Fuck, I’m tired. Will I get better at this? Probably not. This is my apex. My magnum opus if you will.
The biggest unknown will continue to the maturation of the kids. DeBrusk, McAvoy and Bjork will all have their setbacks. Much like Brandon Carlo, they’re going to hit a rookie wall and there’s a chance they could hit it hard. What that means for Boston is unknown at this point.
(Do you…do you see what I did there?)
If there’s a heavy reliance on the young’ns like there seems to be, a rookie wall could drastically hinder the chances of this hockey team to do anything when the weather gets hot. Well, gets hot when it’s traditionally supposed to get hot and not FUCKING 80 DEGREES IN OCTOBER I’M SUPPOSED TO BE WEARING SHORTS AND HOODIES NOT SWEATING….
My last unknown before I drift to slumber is the defense. Like I said under “The Bad”, the defense was anywhere from spectacular tonight. Thankfully, it didn’t cost the Bruins much because the Predators played like a team who didn’t really want to be there from the beginning.
This defense will be an interesting thing to watch. Last year it was just okay and the Bruins were good enough to get the playoffs (variables aside). If it wasn’t for some nice goaltending work by Tuukka Rask, we would be singing a different story.
But here we are.