Boston Bruins face a crucial summer time as they try to place the distress of their latest exit from the NHL play-offs firmly behind them.
Their Recreation 7 defeat in time beyond regulation in opposition to the Florida Panthers left their followers in state of shock, however put a smile on the face of on-line bookmakers.
The Bruins completed 43 factors forward of the Panthers throughout the common season – a margin that made them big favourites to win the collection with the sports activities betting oddsmakers.
NHL legends corresponding to Brett Hull had tipped them to succeed in the Stanley Cup Finals, saying they’d be ‘very laborious to beat within the East’.
He additionally backed ‘Dallas to make it to the Finals’, so remains to be in line to get a part of his prediction appropriate after the Bruins bombed out.
Having had a few weeks to digest the frustration, we have a look at among the points the Bruins should deal with this summer time.
Wave goodbye to some veterans?
Veterans Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci performed essential roles throughout the common season, ending third and fifth within the Bruins factors scoring chart.
Nonetheless, the pair had been disappointing throughout the play-offs and it’s unclear whether or not both of them will fancy enjoying for one more season.
Bergeron undoubtedly has at the least one other 12 months in him and the Bruins could be well-advised to retain his wonderful management abilities.
Krejci is arguably extra expendable, significantly because the Bruins don’t at the moment have a lot wage cap flexibility obtainable to them.
Prioritize a brand new deal for Bertuzzi
Along with resolving the futures of their veterans, the Bruins should additionally contemplate what to do with their trio of commerce deadline additions – Tyler Bertuzzi, Dmitry Orlov and Garnet Hathaway.
The latter two gamers are each dispensable, however Bertuzzi confirmed sufficient alongside David Pastrnak to warrant retaining his providers.
He was a standout performer throughout the play-off collection in opposition to the Panthers, bagging 5 objectives and 5 assists in seven appearances.
His capability to do the soiled work and arrange his teammates with wonderful scoring probabilities is a skillset the Bruins can not afford to move up.
Sacrifice some costly cap hits
As talked about earlier, the Bruins don’t have a lot wage cap to play with, in order that they have to be inventive this summer time in the event that they wish to enhance their roster.
Winger Nick Foligno falls into that class given he’s within the latter stage of his profession and has missed loads of video games by way of harm over the previous two seasons.
Sacrificing one their netminding tandem of Linus Ullmark or Jeremy Swayman would additionally give Boston the chance to amass a lacking piece of the jigsaw.
With Swayman set for a wage improve as a restricted free agent, it is smart to commerce him this summer time and maximise his worth.
Give their promising youth corps an opportunity
Whereas the Bruins will not be overly stacked with promising kids, they’ve a handful who’ve proven sufficient to warrant being handed alternatives.
Swedish ahead Fabian Lysell leaps off the web page after a productive season with the Windfall Bruins within the AHL.
John Beecher, Marc McLaughlin and Oskar Steen even have the potential to step as much as the NHL, albeit as fourth-line grinders.
Netminder Brandon Bussi is an alternative choice if the Bruins determine to half firm with both Ullmark or Swayman this summer time.