by Meaghan Cahill ’20
Despite the tumultuous past couple of seasons, the Bruins do have a strong shot at becoming this year’s Stanley Cup Champions. Last year they finished with a third place position in the Atlantic Division, just behind Montreal and Ottawa, and clinched themselves a playoff seed, which unfortunately ended rather early with an upset by Ottawa as they took the series in six games.
However, this season the Bruins are already showing promise that they will be able to produce a strong and successful season.
With newly hired coach Bruce Cassidy, the Bruins have put together a team that reflects the ever-changing pace of the NHL. With an emphasis on younger and faster players that have an offensive-minded strategy, the Bruins have their picks from many of their young prospects that are making names for themselves in the preseason.
They are also putting together a stronger defensive team with players such as newcomer Charlie McAvoy, who was drafted in the first round by the Bruins and was the top defenseman for Boston University.
The Bruins are also able to have an incredible depth on both the defensive and offensive fronts in returning players such as Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, David Krejci, and David Pastrnak. Bergeron especially, as he was the NHL’s top ranked defensive forward last season.
On top of having two solid first and second lines, the Bruins will also be able to present a solid third line this year, which will include former Providence College player Noel Acciari.
The Bruins will also have better goaltending this year as they are able to roster two solid goalies. Tuukka Rask is obviously their top goalie, but because the team now also has Anton Khudobin, he will not have to overexert himself by playing 65+ games this season like he has in previous seasons. Having Khudobin makes it possible for Rask to have a breakout season and have the capability for a stronger playoff push to the Cup.
While the odds are against them, these factors combined create a strong Cup-winning team in the Boston Bruins.