The Boston Bruins were two wins away from their second Stanley Cup title in three seasons. The defeat against the Chicago Blackhawks has left this team and this city hungry to not only get back, but to bring the cup back home this time.
The Bruins stumbled through the end of the regular season last year, going 3-5-2 in their final 10 games and losing out on the division title to the Montreal Canadiens. But they steamrolled teams through the playoffs as the no. 4 seed and taking a look at their roster, they certainly have the capabilities to make a similar run this season.
They finished last year with a 28-14-6 record in a lockout-shortened season. Although they were middle of the pack in goal scoring (13th in the NHL in goals per game) they were such a strong team because of the stellar play of goaltender Tuukka Rask (1.88 GAA in postseason).
The Bruins had a pretty busy offseason, but they did a good job of retooling for this season. They locked Rask up to a long-term deal, as well as retaining the services of one of the best two-way skaters in the league in Patrice Bergeron.
They did lose some of the contributors from last year’s team including Tyler Seguin, Rich Peverly and Nathan Horton, but they did a great job of bringing in replacements such as Jarome Iginla and Loui Eriksson.
Lastly, the Bruins have young defensemen Torey Krug and Dougie Hamilton as well as David Krejci and Milan Lucic coming off of strong seasons. The one problem the Bruins might face is a lack of depth. Outside of their top six forwards, they don’t have a ton of depth. So if the injury bug hits, it could become problematic.
Even so, the Bruins will go far as long as Rask is in net, and there’s no reason to think they won’t contend for a division title again next year.
Final Prediction: 50-30-2, 102 points