Boston Bruins: Playing to Win
by Jeremy Gross on Friday, October 11th, 2013
Last year, the Boston Bruins fell two wins short of winning the Stanley Cup. After an offseason full of trades and draft picks, the Bruins are back and ready to take another shot at the Cup. Following their loss to the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup Finals in June, the Bruins traded away Tyler Seguin and Rich Peverley to the Dallas Stars, while free agent Nathan Horton signed a seven-year, $37 million deal with the Columbus Blue Jackets. Although it may seem like the Bruins lost all of their talent, this exchange includes its perks. Over the offseason the Bruins acquired star forwards Jerome Iginla and Loui Eriksson, as well as prospects Joe Morrow, Matt Fraser, and Reilly Smith. In an interview, Boston Bruins’ General Manger, Peter Chiarelli, said, “I like the fact we’re going to have a competition on that third line. We’ve got some good young players that are already in the organization and just acquired.”
After training camp, the Bruins entered into a seven-game preseason schedule against many of the elite NHL teams this year, including the Detroit Red Wings (a team that switched from the Western Conference to the Eastern Conference this year), the Montreal Canadiens, and the Washington Capitals. After playing effectively to win 6 out of 7 games in the preseason, the team began their regular season in a home opener against the Tampa Bay Lightning last Thursday night. With shorthanded goals from Chris Kelly and Patrice Bergeron, and another from Milan Lucic, the Bruins quelled the Lightning 3-1.
What do these changes mean for the Bruins looking forward? After a loss in the 2013 Stanley Cup Finals last year, and the loss of star players Tyler Seguin, Rich Peverley, Nathan Horton, and Andrew Ference, fans have considered this to be a “rebuilding” season. However, with the acquisition of superstars Jerome Iginla and Loui Eriksson, the Bruins could prove to be even stronger than last year. Taking pride in their elite professional sports teams, Boston fans have set high standards for the Bruins and expect a season and playoff run similar to those of the past several years. Last season’s David Krejci and Patrice Bergeron have had sore backs this summer from carrying the team all the way to the finals, and only time will tell who will step up this year. The Bruins continue the season with two games this weekend against the Columbus Blue Jackets and then against the Detroit Red Wings, whom they dismantled 4-1 last week.
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