Round 1 - Florida

The Mort Report

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I actually get this quote. Pucks can catch a goalie in weird spots, for me it’s the side or knee mostly. They can hurt like a son of a bitch for days, even weeks, but aren’t really injuries.

That being said, they still absolutely have an effect on the ability to stop pucks, and I for one think Sway outplayed Ully for the last month of the season anyway, so they should have started Sway from the jump.

If it’s true it’s a major injury to the hip, that’s fucking insane, I would trust Bussi over Ully in that situation
 

Myt1

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The hurt vs. injured dichotomy is something I used to hear my high school football coach say to kids all the time. The implication is that you play through the former because it’s primarily a pain management issue, but sit out due to the latter because of structural and/or performance issues.
 

Dummy Hoy

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The hurt vs. injured dichotomy is something I used to hear my high school football coach say to kids all the time. The implication is that you play through the former because it’s primarily a pain management issue, but sit out due to the latter because of structural and/or performance issues.
Bingo. Ulmark felt like he was hurting but not enough to affect performance. I think we can all agree he was wrong, but that's what he meant here.
 

wiffleballhero

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Bingo. Ulmark felt like he was hurting but not enough to affect performance. I think we can all agree he was wrong, but that's what he meant here.
And again, that is exactly what Ullmark should think and try to make so. It is the job of the coach and organization to take the car keys out of his hands.
 

Haunted

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And it was abundantly clear to all of us - as it was with Cassidy and Tuukka - that his performance was substantially degraded.

I've cemented my "Fire Monty" thoughts. The guy panicked and needs to go.
 

Marciano490

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And again, that is exactly what Ullmark should think and try to make so. It is the job of the coach and organization to take the car keys out of his hands.
Exactly. Athletes are trained to always want to play through anything, or at least to say they’re willing - coaches and trainers need to have the final word.
 

54thMA

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Well as torqued off as I still am over what happened in this series, today a friend of mine pointed out Florida had the 17th best record in the NHL this year.

SEVENTEENTH.

The NHL for whatever stupid reason continually screws with the playoff format, but that said, I recall in the 1970's, there was a time where they lined up the teams 1-16 recordwise and had 1 play 16, 2 play 15, etc, etc, instead of the half assed way they do it now.

Had that old seeding system still be in place, they wouldn't even had made the playoffs.

And better yet, sticking with the current half assed system, had either Buffalo or Pittsburg won one more game, the Panthers would have been out.

And yeah, I get it, President's trophy winners last year, had a bunch of injuries this year, they are peaking at the right time, blah, blah, blah.

I don't give a shit; the Bruins still should have won this series in 5 games, 6 tops.

What a disaster, their inability to clear the puck, not make horrible, unforced turnovers, adjust to the Panthers forecheck and make crisp passes killed them.

All series long.

At least the Scottish game was just that; ONE game.

This was a 7 game shitshow.

Or more to the point, a game 5, 6, 7 shitshow.

Three chances to close them out and they could not do it.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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Why couldn’t Marchand lift the puck a little bit on that Game Five ending breakaway?

It’s Wednesday and I still can’t believe they’re not playing Toronto right now. Fuck.
 

wiffleballhero

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Why couldn’t Marchand lift the puck a little bit on that Game Five ending breakaway?

It’s Wednesday and I still can’t believe they’re not playing Toronto right now. Fuck.
I know.

He could have just flipped it soft over the pad, he had him so far out there. The other thing about the Marchand shot is that he also had the time to go backhand and he had him beat there too: Bobrovsky completely sold out on coming out and stopping the one kind of shot he got. Sadly, it worked.

edit: but I don't blame Marchand at all. It happens.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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I know.

He could have just flipped it soft over the pad, he had him so far out there. The other thing about the Marchand shot is that he also had the time to go backhand and he had him beat there too: Bobrovsky completely sold out on coming out and stopping the one kind of shot he got. Sadly, it worked.

edit: but I don't blame Marchand at all. It happens.
I’m not blaming Marchand. But it encapsulates this entire series. Just one missed opportunity after another.

I haven’t been this bummed about a team losing in a long time. This was a special team, everything appeared to be going their way. The roster was stacked, there were great storylines (Bergeron and Krejci riding out winners, Monty getting a second chance, etc) and I got into this team a lot.

I watched most of the games, read as much as I could on the Athletic, I started running a lot and would make sure I was on the treadmill at the top of the hour because the NHL Network would always have Bs highlights at the beginning of the show.

Now thanks to cap, this team will be scattered to the wind. I’m legit bummed that I can’t watch them any more.
 

lexrageorge

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I’m not blaming Marchand. But it encapsulates this entire series. Just one missed opportunity after another.

I haven’t been this bummed about a team losing in a long time. This was a special team, everything appeared to be going their way. The roster was stacked, there were great storylines (Bergeron and Krejci riding out winners, Monty getting a second chance, etc) and I got into this team a lot.

I watched most of the games, read as much as I could on the Athletic, I started running a lot and would make sure I was on the treadmill at the top of the hour because the NHL Network would always have Bs highlights at the beginning of the show.

Now thanks to cap, this team will be scattered to the wind. I’m legit bummed that I can’t watch them any more.
The bolded is what really stings. I'm too young to remember 1971, but at least the Bruins returned the same team the following season. But this season was potentially the true end of era with Bergeron and Krejci. And Sweeney went all in at the deadline with rentals.

Maybe if there was 0.5 seconds more on the clock, Marchand would have been able to get a better shot off.
 

Eddie Jurak

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Bingo. Ulmark felt like he was hurting but not enough to affect performance. I think we can all agree he was wrong, but that's what he meant here.
Wow. Monty is kind of a mix of Grady Little (leaving Pedro in) and Don Zimmer (playing an injured Butch Hobson game in and game out until Hobson finally asked out after running up 43 errors at 3B), then.
 

Dummy Hoy

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Who, they guy who oversaw a 14 win / +93 goal difference improvement?

No one can possibly argue that Monty was at his best this postseason. Not starting Swayman for game six was a dead wrong decision and I disagree with his near constant line shuffling. There are good regular season managers and good post season managers- I'd argue Monty showed that he is the former but failed pretty miserably in his first attempt at the latter with Boston (he had a good first playoffs with Dallas). It's unfortunate and something he (and we) will have to wear for a long time. That said, calls to fire him feel premature to me. He seems to have all the skills to be a great coach, he had a horrible series at the worst of times...no one knows it more than him.

Not to mention, who should come in? I heard people talking about Torts?! You guys want to watch that?

The insatiable need to see people PUNISHED for failure (not pointing at you EJ) boggles my mind. This series was a serious black mark and something we need to keep an eye on, but overall I saw a guy who transformed this team into a wagon...I'm willing to give him another shot. But I lack the bloodlust that so many seem to carry.
 

Boston Brawler

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Who, they guy who oversaw a 14 win / +93 goal difference improvement?

No one can possibly argue that Monty was at his best this postseason. Not starting Swayman for game six was a dead wrong decision and I disagree with his near constant line shuffling. There are good regular season managers and good post season managers- I'd argue Monty showed that he is the former but failed pretty miserably in his first attempt at the latter with Boston (he had a good first playoffs with Dallas). It's unfortunate and something he (and we) will have to wear for a long time. That said, calls to fire him feel premature to me. He seems to have all the skills to be a great coach, he had a horrible series at the worst of times...no one knows it more than him.

Not to mention, who should come in? I heard people talking about Torts?! You guys want to watch that?

The insatiable need to see people PUNISHED for failure (not pointing at you EJ) boggles my mind. This series was a serious black mark and something we need to keep an eye on, but overall I saw a guy who transformed this team into a wagon...I'm willing to give him another shot. But I lack the bloodlust that so many seem to carry.
I think the bloodlust comes from hearing reports about Ullmark being injured (or hurt) and them not making the switch sooner. If he switches in Swayman in game 5 or 6, and they still lose, I don't think there's as much anger.

I really don't know where I am with it personally, I've gone back and forth. Obviously the players respect him and responded to his coaching style. That's very valuable and a coaching switch could undo any positives to carry into next season.
 

PedroSpecialK

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That said, calls to fire him feel premature to me. He seems to have all the skills to be a great coach, he had a horrible series at the worst of times...no one knows it more than him.
This is the crux of it - does he know he had a horrible series? Might be asking too much, but I didn't hear an acknowledgement of him saying he didn't put the team in the best position to win, at least from the post-game press conference and the exit interviews. To say nothing of his inaction in removing a clearly laboring Ullmark after goals 3 or 4 in game 6.

It seems Montgomery's preferred game 7 starter won't ever become public, but if that's where his head was at going into it, do you risk another season with that kind of decision making at the helm? Can you rely on a coach whom you need to babysit on subsets of roster decisions? Maybe if he's going to reliably get the best out of the group, but I'd argue he didn't do that in the playoffs with the choices for who played / sat either.
 

The Napkin

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especilly since they went with a tandem all season so it's not like it would have been this big monumental decision. It wouldn't have even been a blip had he gone with Swayman and they lost a game or 2 and then gone back to a (rested and maybe healthy) Ullmark. It would have just been normal! I just wish someone would make it make sense to me.
 

nolasoxfan

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They are hockey men. The hockey men say you must pick one goalie in the playoffs and go with it.
This sentiment was all over the Sirius-XM hockey channel. Every old-timey hockey mouthpiece they interviewed parroted the same "can't alternate goalies during the playoffs; just isn't done" line.
 

MiracleOfO2704

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This sentiment was all over the Sirius-XM hockey channel. Every old-timey hockey mouthpiece they interviewed parroted the same "can't alternate goalies during the playoffs; just isn't done" line.
I heard them say that in the context of the Dallas-Minnesota series, which is comparing apples to whiskey, since Fleury was pretty dogshit by the end of that series, and Swayman was a top-10 goalie by GSAA.
 

cshea

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This sentiment was all over the Sirius-XM hockey channel. Every old-timey hockey mouthpiece they interviewed parroted the same "can't alternate goalies during the playoffs; just isn't done" line.
Nobody has ever willfully rotated goalies in the playoffs. Performance and injury have resulted in rotations or teams going on deep runs using both but for whatever reason conventional wisdom among NHL decision makers is to pick a guy and go.

It doesn't make any sense. The Bruins played 6 months and 82 games and had the best regular season in the history of the sport. A big part of that was rotating the goales basically every-other which is what they did outside of a stretch in November when Swayman was hurt. Then they get to playoffs and abandon the strategy that worked so well for 82 games.

It worked when they did it with Rask because they at least had tangible data points that he could withstand a 2 month playoff run. With him they'd save him in the regular season, then let him run in the playoffs. Neither Ullmark or Swayman had every gone through such a thing. Ullmark had 2 games of NHL playoff experience heading into this series. Swayman had 5 plus a period. Exepecting either of them to run the 2 month gauntlet of every-other-night high intesntisty hocky was venturing into the unknown. In my opinion, even at full health, abandoning the rotation was lunacy. I don't even have a word for how dumb it was with the information about Ullmark's healthy.
 

Curt S Loew

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Nobody has ever willfully rotated goalies in the playoffs. Performance and injury have resulted in rotations or teams going on deep runs using both but for whatever reason conventional wisdom among NHL decision makers is to pick a guy and go.
Yeah. You pick your #1 Goalie and go with him. The Bruins had 2 #1 Goalies. Or at worst, 1 and 1A. And 1A was arguably performing better in the stretch run.

I think you can throw conventional wisdom out in this case. But teams never do. I can't think of a similar situation off the top of my head right now.
 

jezza1918

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Yeah. You pick your #1 Goalie and go with him. The Bruins had 2 #1 Goalies. Or at worst, 1 and 1A. And 1A was arguably performing better in the stretch run.

I think you can throw conventional wisdom out in this case. But teams never do. I can't think of a similar situation off the top of my head right now.
Is there any kind of similar regular season situation to even compare it to though? Where you have a Vezina winner and a top 5 alternate goalie that was playing like a Vezina candidate?
 

Curt S Loew

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Is there any kind of similar regular season situation to even compare it to though? Where you have a Vezina winner and a top 5 alternate goalie that was playing like a Vezina candidate?
Exactly. I don't think so. Or at least I can't think of one off the top of my head.
 

Dummy Hoy

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It seems Montgomery's preferred game 7 starter won't ever become public, but if that's where his head was at going into it, do you risk another season with that kind of decision making at the helm? Can you rely on a coach whom you need to babysit on subsets of roster decisions? Maybe if he's going to reliably get the best out of the group, but I'd argue he didn't do that in the playoffs with the choices for who played / sat either.
He did it all year...why he didn't in the playoffs, who knows.

I'm obviously wrong here, but I'm going with the larger sample size of excellent coaching. Now, if in his exit interviews he stubbornly insists he made no mistakes, okay, maybe we need a talk. But none of us know what was behind the scenes, and given what I saw from say July to Mid-April, I'm (shockingly) trusting the decision makers around the team right now.
 

Salem's Lot

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Montgomery’s playoff decision making going forward is probably a moot point considering that the salary cap is going bludgeon this roster. At this point, all I care about is his ability to work with young players, which he appears to be excellent at. When the next window opens up for this organization, they can hire a coach that doesn’t panic in the playoffs.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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Montgomery’s playoff decision making going forward is probably a moot point considering that the salary cap is going bludgeon this roster. At this point, all I care about is his ability to work with young players, which he appears to be excellent at. When the next window opens up for this organization, they can hire a coach that doesn’t panic in the playoffs.
I don't think that the Bruins are going to go flying off a cliff in the next year or so. With the talent that they have, they should be able to hold serve in the division and maybe make a run--especially if Bergeron and Krejci come back at short dollars. Will they be as good as they were this year? Probably not. But at this time last year, did you think that they were going to be as good as they were this season?

As we've seen, the NHL is a super weird sport come playoff time.
 

Haunted

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Regular season records are irrelevant if you piss down your leg in the post season like Monty (and Little) did. I know Cassidy was let go for more reasons than his insistence on playing a very-obviously-hurt Tuukka, but that absolutely played a part in it. And here we are, with an even worse playoff showing and the same goalie management.

Monty cocked this series up about as badly as I've ever seen a coach do so. Despite the constant poor play, this was a winnable series against a much lesser opponent, and Monty again and again put the team in a bad position.
 

Mr. Wednesday

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It should be noted that Montgomery has won an NCAA title with Denver, so postseason success is not completely foreign to him.
 

Dummy Hoy

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It should be noted that Montgomery has won an NCAA title with Denver, so postseason success is not completely foreign to him.
He also upset the Preds with Dallas as a WC and took the eventual champion Blues to 7 games.

There's zero track record of him being a shitty post-season coach, although he was poor this year.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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He also upset the Preds with Dallas as a WC and took the eventual champion Blues to 7 games.

There's zero track record of him being a shitty post-season coach, although he was poor this year.
So he's 1-2 in series in his coaching career. Both series losses came in Game 7 OT.

And all the evidence we need of him being a shitty postseason coach was this year. Given a historically dominant team, he made every wrong choice possible in order to lose the series.
 

kenneycb

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I disagree with your last sentence. He made good choices in Games 3 and 4 when their top 2 centers were out and they won. He failed to adjust after that but you're acting like they got swept.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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No, instead they blew a 3-1 series lead to a team 17th in points. That's hardly better.

I certainly hope no one is trying to softshoe this offseason. It's the biggest disaster since the 2010 Philly series.
 

cshea

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What do you want them to do, blow it up? They didn't didn't do that after 2010. They added Horton and ran it back. No coaching changes, no management changes, nobody traded away. More recently, Tampa Bay ran it back after their disaster in 2019. Toronto is on like their 7th attempt with their core group, coaches and managment (with Babcock for Keefe the only real big move during that time frame)/

I mean the Cap is going to force some changes but I'm not sure what you're looking for them to do. Fire the coaches? Fire the front office? You have said over and over that it's the most important offseason in years, but haven't said what direction you'd like them to take or a proposed solution. I think it's pretty well understood by everyone, including the front office, that this is a significant offseason and there is work to be done.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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Well 2010 is a good example because they certainly traded key pieces away: they ditched Wideman in the Horton deal because they realized he was softer than puppy shit and not someone who could be depended on for the rigors of postseason play as a number 2 defenseman. They understood that they needed to change fundamental aspects of the team that had been responsible for the catastrophic collapse. Later that season they dealt Wheeler as well.

So for starters I'd like to see them do the same this summer; Florida pushed them all over the rink and they got scared and tentative because of that. They need to address that. That doesn't mean adding more talentless slow goons (Forbert is worthless), but rather to increase the fight in their players. Everyone thought Bertuzzi was a great addition because of that, maybe they need more.

The jury is also still out on Monty and I hope they take a long hard look at whether he should be replaced. His playoff performance was nearly farcical in Games 5 through 7.

Donnie is a smart guy and he's already said that due to the cap changes are coming; I'm just hoping he understands the types of changes the team needs.

As a fan it's not only disheartening to see them humiliate themselves to the glee of the larger viewing nation (Charles Barkley of all people is dunking on them now), but also to see them constantly playing so badly at home in the playoffs. The pressure always seems to undermine them. I don't know how to change that but goddamn it makes things so much harder.
 
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cshea

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That's fair, though I think it's very hard to find tough, good players. The aholes are a dying breed in the NHL. They did make an effort to address this at the deadline with Bertuzzi, Hathaway and Orlov. I think some of the problem in this area isn't that they are a bunch of softies but that they are asked to skate away. Maybe the coaches can pivot a bit and unleash them to some degree. Tough line to toe between defending yourself and not taking dumb penalties.

Personally, I'd try to move Carlo and Grzelyck to free cap space. Some of the money I'd save there would be redirected to retain Orlov and maybe Clifton, though I suspect Clifton is about to get the bag. Carlo and Grzelyck would have value on the trade market and return something decent in futures to replenish some of what they traded at the deadline. Trading Carlo leaves them thin on the right but they can probably find a righty 3rd pairing player on the UFA market somewhere.

Up front, I don't think I'd do much. They probably won't be able to sign Bertuzzi or Hathaway. Nosek and Foligno are gone too. So they'll need to rebuild part of the bottom 6 but I think that can be done internally. If Bergy and Krejci return we're basically looking at the same top 8 players. They need to then find a 3RW and build a 4th line.

Marchand - Bergeron - DeBrusk
Zacha - Krejci - Pastrnak
Hall - Coyle - XXX

4th line can be built fairly easily. Lauko should be a full time player next year. If Frederic isn't the 3RW he can be 4C. Greer is cheap and under contract for next season. In Providence they have McLaughlin, Beecher as potential candidates. Lysell maybe gets a look as the 3RW. I don't think they need to go nuclear up front. I'd hate to trade a winger like DeBrusk or Hall and then also lose Bergeron or Krejci. Best way to compensate for aging/declining centers is to have awesome wingers so I don't want to touch them. Maybe there is a surprise in camp with a kid like Matthew Poitras or, more likely, Brett Harrison.

Run it back with the goalies.

Seems doable and not a crazy facelift.
 

LogansDad

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Lindholm on the naughty list at 22 percent is disheartening. We know Forbort is Hal Gill v2. Lindholm OTOH. Sigh.
Matches the eye test, though. Lindholm looked awful the entire series. I'm surprised they haven't come out with a statement about him playing on a missing leg.
 

wiffleballhero

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I love Lindholm.

I think he's great, but he played that series like he was caught unawares with regard to what happens in the playoffs. Pretty odd given his 59 playoff games before this year.
 

OfTheCarmen

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Just made a similar comment in the round 2 East thread. Gudas doesn't seem to actually play hockey.