Patrice Bergeron and Second-Line Carrying the Boston Bruins
The Boston Bruins‘ second-line continues to contribute at a high level. At the beginning of the year I would have laughed at you if you said Brad Marchand was going to start slow and Reilly Smith was going to be the other winger on that line.
Smith contributed with another assist to give him 18 on the year as the Bruins dropped another game last night to the Toronto Maple Leafs and have now lost three out of their last four. Smith assisted on Marchand’s 11th goal of the season while Patrice Bergeron chipped in with both a goal and an assist. Bergeron now has 11 goals and 16 assists on the season as the second-line contributed two of the three goals in the loss to the Leafs.
The Bruins’ offense has been anemic the last few games, and their defense has been even worse. The game against the San Jose Sharks looks to be a fluke in the string of their last few games. The Bergeron line has supplied some stability and is going to have to continue to play at a high level if the Bruins want to make a run at the Stanley Cup this year.
Unfortunately, Bergeron and his line mates can’t solve this mini-crisis the Bruins are in alone. The Bruins need to get more out of their first and third lines. This lull the Bruins are in is coming at a terrible time. The NHL is going to be heading into the Olympic break soon, and the Bruins are going to be carrying zero momentum into the second half of the season. The Bruins are getting key pieces such as Shawn Thornton and Loui Eriksson back. I understand it will take some time for them to adjust, but the problem is this team is way to good to drop three out of four games. It is in excusable.