Kukla's Korner Hockey
by George Malik on 01/11/15 at 06:42 AM ET
The Boston Globe's Fluto Shinzawa spends quite a bit of his Sunday notebook discussing the Toronto Maple Leafs' mess and their need to rebuild around Phil Kessel--a little contrary to the "wisdom" coming out of Toronto these days (and I'm sorry, Leaf fans, Kessel has all the social graces of a perpetually angry 5-year-old, but he's the best player you've got)--but I do believe that he's the first person to make this suggestion:
There is no secret to playing the Bruins. Opponents have identified that panic sets in if they forecheck aggressively and get in the Bruins’ faces. On defense, the Bruins don’t have the personnel to retrieve pucks quickly and shuttle them forward before they’re picking the backs of their heads out of the glass.
The Bruins are indeed slow-footed if they're not the ones smashing their opponents on the forecheck.
Of their regular six-pack, Dougie Hamilton and Torey Krug are the best at moving the puck. When he’s not skittish, Matt Bartkowski does the job, too. But it’s too easy for other teams to slam down hard, eliminate the D-to-D pass, and hound the Bruins below the dots. No club can succeed when it’s under assault behind the goal line.
By next season, Joe Morrow might be ready for full-time NHL work. He’s not enough. The Bruins need at least one more defenseman who can move the puck with poise.
With Arizona rebuilding, GM Don Maloney is listening on everyone, including Keith Yandle. The Bruins would have to send Krug the other way, along with maybe another young roster player, a pick, and a prospect. They’d also have to clear out cash. Neither is easy to do.
Shinzawa continues, and as this is KK hockey, I (George) will refrain from adding a .gif of someone raising a middle finger regarding Mr. Shinzawa's "good on the NHL for fining Gustav Nyquist" line.
The second infraction was a dive, but the first wasn't--and I think it's pretty pathetic that the NHL's far more concerned with having its referees determine if a player's embellishing than, you know, calling the obstruction, interference, moving picks, tackles, seals and sit-on-him moves that have become commonplace again in a clutchier, grabbier NHL than we've seen since the 04-05 season mercifully ended with Calgary unable to all but literally rope down John Tortorella's Lightning.
Be the first to comment.
Add a Comment
Please limit embedded image or media size to 575 pixels wide.
Most Recent Blog Posts
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org