Bruins issue update on Patrice Bergeron: https://t.co/kHgucA1ptQ
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) February 27, 2018
Typical Bergy, ya know? Make no big deal of playing on a broken foot because it’s team over everything. Always. Just another notch on his legacy belt. But this one hurts. It was Saturday against the Leafs when he blocked a shot that put him in a walking boot. The medical staff said his X-Ray was negative on Saturday and I believe them, but that’s neither here or there. This fucking sucks. His line, with Marchand and Pastrnak on his wings, has been the best line in hockey at times this season and it’ll be depressing not getting to see that.
The Bruins are in prime position to earn a playoff berth as they sit 20 points in front of 4th place Florida. With only 22 games left I don’t imagine the Panthers have any realistic chance to mess with any of Boston’s plans. In fact, this rest for Patrice won’t be a bad thing at all as long as that foot heals properly. People forget he missed the first 5 games of the season. You wouldn’t know it by seeing how well he’s played, which is every-bit-as-good as a Hart candidate would. But this time it’ll be more than 5 games.
Riley Nash will move into Patrice’s role on the first line and I’m a big fan of this. Nash has been a go-to on the penalty kill this year, decent in the dot and knows how to play to his strengths. I can imagine he’s ready to prove himself even further after such a public display of confidence from Cassidy. I’m almost certain the lines will get juggled down the stretch but I’m looking forward to Nash getting to work with Marchy and Pasta. David Backes slide into Bergy’s spot on the first power play unit per the Bruins Twitter account.
In the meantime, all the depth Sweeney traded for looks like it’s gonna get put to work. Sweeney traded a 2019 5th round draft pick to Chicago for winger Tommy Wingels who, per Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy, will skate with David Backes and Danton Heinen. An indication that Backes would be moving back to center. New acquired veteran Brian Gionta, who most recently wore the C for Team USA at the 2018 Winter Olympics, will be a healthy scratch against Carolina tonight. But it looks like he’s getting closer to the ice than I thought he would. I’d certainly hope a veteran like Rick Nash, who the Bruins traded 2 picks and 3 players for, will have some sense of awareness and step up. The DeBrusk – Krejci – Rick Nash line has real potential to be a difference maker for the B’s offensively and they’ll need to be.
It’s easy to panic when a star goes down but this Bruins team has a lot of young talent and they’re deep. It is impossible to replace Patrice Bergeron. You can only try to attack his absence by committee and hope for the best. He’ll be re-evaluated in two weeks and we’ll see what happens from there. I believe in Bruce Cassidy and I believe in the 2017-18 Boston Bruins. They added pieces at the deadline to win now and have gotten to this point with excellent dual goaltending, solid defensive principles, spotlight-grabbing rookies. Expect more of the same even without Bergy.