2021-2022 Bruins Season Thread

The Napkin

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Is it time to have a conversation about Pastrnak?
9/13 on the year in 30 games. (24/35 pace)
1G, 2 assists since Dec 1 (11 games). No multi goal games all year. Only 6 multipoint games (5 1/1 and 1 0/2).
 

Salem's Lot

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Is it time to have a conversation about Pastrnak?
9/13 on the year in 30 games. (24/35 pace)
1G, 2 assists since Dec 1 (11 games). No multi goal games all year. Only 6 multipoint games (5 1/1 and 1 0/2).
I just assumed after his son died that he was going to have an off year. I don’t think many players could have that happen to them in the off-season and have it not affect them the following season.
 

burstnbloom

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Is it time to have a conversation about Pastrnak?
9/13 on the year in 30 games. (24/35 pace)
1G, 2 assists since Dec 1 (11 games). No multi goal games all year. Only 6 multipoint games (5 1/1 and 1 0/2).
Ya he's not quite right but its mostly shooting percentage related. His xGF/60 is actually up from his last three seasons but his actual GF/60 is way down. He's still generating chances, shot attempts, high danger chances etc,he's just not finishing. His shooting percentage this year is 4.65% and he's usually around 12%. If he shot at his average for his career at ES and PP he's be at 13 goals and we'd kind be like "eh not lighting it up but ok." Some iffy finishing, some bad luck, not much I'd worry about long term. If he weren't generating anything, I'd feel differently. Topdown's model has him essentially being the same player (and reverting to his pre 2020 greatness on the PP) but a drop in finishing. Maybe he's got something effecting his shot that is irreparable but it would have to allow him to do literally everything else he does to the same effect and just acutely lessen his shot. I think he's probably fine. Maybe a bit of low confidence right now.

48098
 

Salem's Lot

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He’s not hitting that one timer on the power play as squarely as he usually does. That is something that he practices constantly, so I feel very confident that he will get his form back eventually.
 

moretsyndrome

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That backcheck on Zuccarello last night was Keith Crowder-level of hustle and not something that I thought we could expect after watching him during his first couple of years. It wasn't just the layout. He anticipated the turnover coming well before it actually happened and was already digging up ice. Just a great play.

He's gone through these spells with his shot and PP one-timers before. I'm sure it will correct soon.
 

durandal1707

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I'm not seeing any reason to discontinue Smith on the first line.

. Marchand-Bergeron-Pastrnak Marchand-Bergeron-Smith
TOI: 229:13 50:15
Off Zone Faceoffs: 65.73% 57.69%
Expected Goals: 65.48% (11.74 to 6.19) 78.81% (3.05 to 0.82)
High Danger Chances: 61.54% (40 to 25) 76.47% (13 to 4)
TOI/HDCF: 5:44 3:51
Corsi: 65.73% (305 to 159) 70.24% (59 to 25)


There's a quality of competition skew in that Smith on the first line has been used against some awful teams, but I really hope they keep trying this out and seeing if they can cobble together a legit 2nd line with Pasta.
 

burstnbloom

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I think Klingberg is a pretty rough fit given the needs at other positions. I want to upgrade the right side over Clifton but Klingberg would likely cost most of the capital the bruins have to spend and they still have gaping holes up front.
 

cshea

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Yeah, Klingberg is a weird fit. Don't really need a righty D. Priorities are C and LHD. They've been good since the covid break, but I'm not ready to start trading assets for a rental either.

No update on plan B for Rask. Providence's next game is Friday at home against Hartford.We've also got Montreal coming to town on Wednesday. They're essentially an AHL team at the moment so they could just throw him in there.
 

cshea

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5-1-0 since the Covid/Christmas pause. They've worked their way into pretty firm playoff position, even if they're only holding on to the 2nd wild card at the moment. Dom's model has them at 97% to make the playoffs and Hockey Reference is a bit more conservative but still has them at 88%. The closest team behind them in points is Detroit who is 4 points back but the Bruins have 4 games in hand on them still. Columbus is 7 back and the Bruins have 1 game in hand.

The goal scoring binge probably won't last, their shooting percentage is high during this run, but they were also due for some good puck luck. They have the best xGF% in the league at 5x5, it's just going to be a matter of consistently generating, and finishing, high danger chances.
 

Bozo Texino

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If you've got a subscription to The Athletic, Dom dropped his 21/22 "hockey cards" yesterday. Great way to look at a team's metrics.

The Bruins can be found here.
 

cshea

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Ahcan and Lewington will both play. They had 6 D last night and lost Moore to injury and Grz to protocol.

Ahcan just cleared AHL protocol today so tough spot for him.
 

joe dokes

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In one week and 4 games he went from a 59 point to 72 point pace and from 5 to 8 multi point games, all via 2+ goals. Not a bad week.
Deeper analysis may show that it's more correlation than causation, but the immediate results from the line shuffling has been pretty astounding and fun to watch.
 

biff_hardbody

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I'm excited about watching the Bruins again.

Hall looks like a different player with Pastrnak; like he's not trying to do it all himself. Marchand is a superstar and, along with Bergeron, are making Smith look in place as a top line player. Steen and Vaak have given me some promise for the future - it is really too bad they lost Zboril. They may have the best goaltending situation in the league as long as there aren't long term ramifications for sending Swayman down.

My only concern is McAvoy. He does not look like himself and my worry is that if it is an injury which would get better if they shut him down for a month or two, they would, meaning it's something he'll be dealing with all year. He doesn't look comfortable out there.
 

burstnbloom

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I'm excited about watching the Bruins again.

Hall looks like a different player with Pastrnak; like he's not trying to do it all himself. Marchand is a superstar and, along with Bergeron, are making Smith look in place as a top line player. Steen and Vaak have given me some promise for the future - it is really too bad they lost Zboril. They may have the best goaltending situation in the league as long as there aren't long term ramifications for sending Swayman down.

My only concern is McAvoy. He does not look like himself and my worry is that if it is an injury which would get better if they shut him down for a month or two, they would, meaning it's something he'll be dealing with all year. He doesn't look comfortable out there.
Since January 1, McAvoy has been on the ice for 11GF and 5GA. He, personally, has 1G, 6A in 6 games. His 11 5v5 GF in that time period is second in the NHL to Gryz. His underlying numbers and ranks in the NHL in that time:

CF% 63.12 Rank - 2
SCF% 66.99 Rank - 1
HDCF% 66.67 Rank- 2
xGF% 69.49 Rank - 1

I'd say if that player is your only concern, we are in pretty good shape.
 

burstnbloom

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There might be some recency bias with McAvoy, who had a pretty rough stretch last night.
Cshea already said it but also he did play about 50 min in 24 hours. I can reconcile the idea that he was "off" because he did look a little gassed at the end, but his results have been Norris Caliber since the covid break (for 2 +years), including last night.
 

joe dokes

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Cshea already said it but also he did play about 50 min in 24 hours. I can reconcile the idea that he was "off" because he did look a little gassed at the end, but his results have been Norris Caliber since the covid break (for 2 +years), including last night.
Overall he was fine. But he had a 4 or 5 shifts-in-a-row run where he wasn't. That's all. And that may have been what gave the poster above some pause.
 

biff_hardbody

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I appreciate the posters who have changed my opinion somewhat wrt to McAvoy. It looked to my eyes that McAvoy wasn't moving well the past few games - he looked like an AHLer on the Farabee goal and I distinctly remember him getting beat easily in the Washington game, which was out of character. Obviously, I am not an NHL scout (and won't be one anytime soon). I should have checked advanced stats before posting my thoughts about what I've seen, so mea culpa there.

I am pleased to be wrong. If McAvoy is playing at a Norris-level caliber, this team can make a run with the goaltending and scoring they are getting since the Covid break.
 

cshea

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I have a question for the hockey experts. Is Haula sort of good? Or is he simply in a really good situation centering two studs.
It's mostly the wingers. Hall and Pasta are perfect together. I always wanted to see them together last year but Hall - Krejci - Smith was white hot right out of the gate so there was no need to mess around. Hall is an elite playmaker, he's not really a shooter/scorer. He works best having someone who can finish off his passes. Even counting his time in Buffalo he was near the top of the league in high danger passes last season. Of course, Buffalo sucked so he had nobody around him who could finish those passes off. Enter David Pastrnak, one of the very best shooters and finishers on the planet. It's a perfect fit.

Haula is pretty fungible. That line would probably look the same if, say, Nosek was the center. They would probably be better with Coyle but if Pasta and Hall can drag around Haula and be a monster, might as well let Coyle try to drive the 3rd line.
 

cshea

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I appreciate the posters who have changed my opinion somewhat wrt to McAvoy. It looked to my eyes that McAvoy wasn't moving well the past few games - he looked like an AHLer on the Farabee goal and I distinctly remember him getting beat easily in the Washington game, which was out of character. Obviously, I am not an NHL scout (and won't be one anytime soon). I should have checked advanced stats before posting my thoughts about what I've seen, so mea culpa there.

I am pleased to be wrong. If McAvoy is playing at a Norris-level caliber, this team can make a run with the goaltending and scoring they are getting since the Covid break.
It's because he's out there all the time, almost half the game, usually against the other teams best players. Hockey is a really fast game played with a rubber puck that bounces all over the place. Shit happens. He's gonna get beat, he's gonna miss a pass, flub an exit, etc.1 bad play that results in a goal against is far more noticeable than 10 little positive detail plays that prevent prevent a shot/scoring chance against. You just hope the good stuff he does outweighs the bad and random stuff which it always does for him. When he's on the ice, the Bruins have ~60% share of the shots, chances, high danger chances, and goals. The crazy thing is he's been a little unlucky, his PDO is .988 (should gregress to 1.000 over time). His xGF% on the year is an absurd (one may say Bergeron-esque) 62% given his usage while his actual goals for % is 57%.
 

LogansDad

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McAvoy was out last weekend with an LBI as well, wasn't he? Could have just been a long week after being banged up catching up with him a bit.

I actually think Haula is good, and has been better recently. I agree that Pasta and Hall would be likely to produce even if one of us was centering them, but Haula has looked really good since the break, and is showing way more explosiveness than I remember him showing before. He obviously isn't Krejci, but I think he's adding to those two more than he is holding them back.
 

Bob Montgomerys Helmet Hat

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It's mostly the wingers. Hall and Pasta are perfect together. I always wanted to see them together last year but Hall - Krejci - Smith was white hot right out of the gate so there was no need to mess around. Hall is an elite playmaker, he's not really a shooter/scorer. He works best having someone who can finish off his passes. Even counting his time in Buffalo he was near the top of the league in high danger passes last season. Of course, Buffalo sucked so he had nobody around him who could finish those passes off. Enter David Pastrnak, one of the very best shooters and finishers on the planet. It's a perfect fit.

Haula is pretty fungible. That line would probably look the same if, say, Nosek was the center. They would probably be better with Coyle but if Pasta and Hall can drag around Haula and be a monster, might as well let Coyle try to drive the 3rd line.
This is very helpful. Thanks
 

BostonFanInCanesLand

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McAvoy was out last weekend with an LBI as well, wasn't he? Could have just been a long week after being banged up catching up with him a bit.

I actually think Haula is good, and has been better recently. I agree that Pasta and Hall would be likely to produce even if one of us was centering them, but Haula has looked really good since the break, and is showing way more explosiveness than I remember him showing before. He obviously isn't Krejci, but I think he's adding to those two more than he is holding them back.
Yes McAvoy was dinged up enough to miss the games against the Wild and the Lightning. Hopefully it won’t be a nagging injury.

McAvoy has reached the level where he can play well with anyone (Gryz, Forbort, Reilly, Zboril, Vaak). I hope they keep Vaak with him while Gryz is on the Covid layaway plan. McAvoy is so steady and, like Chara before him, players like Vaak and Zboril can loosen their grip a little bit and try and play to their own strengths when they’re paired with Charlie. Invaluable reps.

While I agree that Pasta and Hall are clicking so well that Nosek would be fine inbetween the two of them I join you in liking what I’ve seen from Haula in the past half dozen games. There was a play last night (I think it might have been in the 2nd period) where Hall and Pasta were doing their thing and Haula accelerated through the middle and was wide open for a pass between the dot and the crease. The pass didn’t happen but if he keeps going to those spaces it’s going to open up all sorts of opportunities for the 2nd line. Could the Bruins do better for a 2L center? Sure. But so far this is working out better than expected.

I can’t believe I’m saying this but the news about Forbort is good. The B’s need a few more experienced Ds back on the ice. As long as he is stapled to the 3rd pairing that‘ll be ok. And I’d like Forbort to be able to relieve Bergy of his new enforcer role.
 

burstnbloom

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McAvoy was out last weekend with an LBI as well, wasn't he? Could have just been a long week after being banged up catching up with him a bit.

I actually think Haula is good, and has been better recently. I agree that Pasta and Hall would be likely to produce even if one of us was centering them, but Haula has looked really good since the break, and is showing way more explosiveness than I remember him showing before. He obviously isn't Krejci, but I think he's adding to those two more than he is holding them back.
Haula is certainly playing well. I think his style is a compliment to Pasta and Hall who are both excellent rush players. The line is getting good results for sure. I do think they are bringing him along, as was previously pointed out. If you look at those players without Haula, they re better without him.

48326

edit- SSS of course, but still.
 
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LogansDad

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A large chunk of that is with Bergy, while Marchand was out, though, wasn't it? I'd be curious to see what the numbers are with Bergy, and without either of them (so, with Nosek, etc.).

What site is that on? I'd love to play around with it.
 

burstnbloom

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Oh, I'm in love with this.
Ya it's awesome. Welcome to the lunacy.

Your point is well taken re: Bergeron. It's just that Hall and Pasta both have long histories of putting up xG numbers better than what they are doing right now including this season. It's pretty easy to draw a conclusion that Haula is part of that. That's not to say it's not working, because they've been very good, it just still feels like a position worth upgrading.
 

joe dokes

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Your point is well taken re: Bergeron. It's just that Hall and Pasta both have long histories of putting up xG numbers better than what they are doing right now including this season. It's pretty easy to draw a conclusion that Haula is part of that. That's not to say it's not working, because they've been very good, it just still feels like a position worth upgrading.
As the team is presently constructed, and given the offense through December, it was a tradeoff Cassidy had to make. 71/88/56 & 63/37/12 makes the whole team better even if 63/37/88 is better than either of them.
 

burstnbloom

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As the team is presently constructed, and given the offense through December, it was a tradeoff Cassidy had to make. 71/88/56 & 63/37/12 makes the whole team better even if 63/37/88 is better than either of them.
I agree. I questioned it at the time given Haula's play prior to the change. I just mean going forward, it should be the number one priority for Sweeney to upgrade going forward.
 

EL Jeffe

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It's unfortunate that even with the winning streak, they have't really gained any ground in the standings. The Eastern Conference is just so Top 8 heavy, and only Washington over in the Metropolitan is scuffling. That said, it's encouraging to see what they did against Tampa and a healthy Tuukka absolutely raises their ceiling for a deep playoff run. This is a really fun team right now.
 

lexrageorge

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It's unfortunate that even with the winning streak, they have't really gained any ground in the standings. The Eastern Conference is just so Top 8 heavy, and only Washington over in the Metropolitan is scuffling. That said, it's encouraging to see what they did against Tampa and a healthy Tuukka absolutely raises their ceiling for a deep playoff run. This is a really fun team right now.
Some of the standings dilemma is that they've played only 34 games, while other teams above them have played 36 or even 37.

They are 3 points behind the Pens for the first wild-card, but have 2 games in hand. 5 points behind the Leafs and Capitals, but have 1 and 3 games in hand on both. And they have put some distance between them and the likely DNQ teams, which is also valuable.

Still, hate to be the Islanders (29 games) or Senators (30) right now.
 

TFP

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It's unfortunate that even with the winning streak, they have't really gained any ground in the standings.
They've made up significant ground in the standings, I don't understand this comment at all. They're now only 5 back of Toronto, they were 12 back when they restarted the season after the new year. They were also 3 back of Detroit and out of the playoffs, now they're 7 up on them.
 

durandal1707

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We saw another benefit of the line restructuring last night. Cassidy was deliberately using the Bergeron line to head-to-head against the Giroux line, perhaps as a way to neutralize Philly's best players. With Pasta on the second line now, it turned out to be an optimization IMO. Though I think Pasta's defensive game is actually pretty good now, this arrangement allowed him to get back to his wheelhouse.

The other lines tore into the Flyers as well - Coyle line had a 81% xGF and the Nosek line had a 88% xGF. I especially like Blidh-Nosek-Lazar, especially compared to last year's 4th line. They skate pretty well and are pretty good forecheckers as a result, and they generate good chances in the chaos they cause. (3-0 in HDC last night)
 

Cotillion

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We saw another benefit of the line restructuring last night. Cassidy was deliberately using the Bergeron line to head-to-head against the Giroux line, perhaps as a way to neutralize Philly's best players. With Pasta on the second line now, it turned out to be an optimization IMO. Though I think Pasta's defensive game is actually pretty good now, this arrangement allowed him to get back to his wheelhouse.

The other lines tore into the Flyers as well - Coyle line had a 81% xGF and the Nosek line had a 88% xGF. I especially like Blidh-Nosek-Lazar, especially compared to last year's 4th line. They skate pretty well and are pretty good forecheckers as a result, and they generate good chances in the chaos they cause. (3-0 in HDC last night)
Pasta has had some really good hustle backchecks in the last 3 games or so that I can remember. One was a full out dive and swipe that saved a pretty open pass to someone in perfect scoring position