Cheap Thoughts

by
Drew Larman Boston Bruins

Drew Larman, please save us.

Bruins don’t play until tomorrow night when Gonz’ Columbus Blue Jackets invade the Garden and the Battle of HGW ensues. I’ll forgo any trash talk as the CBJ have had their struggles this season and the Bruins have been nearly as frustrating to watch at times thanks to injury and inconsistency so it just wouldn’t be much fun. At some point, when both teams are at higher points and the contest has some fire to it, you’ll get to see some textual conflagrations here that will make you shift about uncomfortably in your seat and want to look away from the monitor. Not today, however. Today we’re both just trying to survive.

Meanwhile, a few thoughts.

Tuukka Rask is now second in the NHL in both saves percentage and goals against with a 2.09 GAA and a .928 SVPCT, behind by the slimmest margin to only Ryan Miller of Buffalo. He’s also 10-5 in 17 starts. Those are good numbers folks and I start to wonder when it is, if Tuukka keeps up that sort of play and remains steady, we see the beginnings of an actual goaltender controversy here. There have been rumblings amongst the more hysterical fan contingent and media members (hello Michael Felger) out there but little in terms of real discussion. The problem is, everyone loves Tim Thomas and the man only went and won the Vezina Trophy last season. He has not, however, to this point shown the sort of consistent play he did last year and has had a few rough nights. There comes a point when a discussion is warranted and I wonder when that might be.

Drew Larman and Adam McQuiad must feel like they’re on some sort of giant rubber band that stretches from Boston to Providence at this point. In the past few days alone they’ve bounced back and forth a number of times. Today’s status: Larman recalled on an emergency basis while McQuaid, who was just called up this morning, heads back down there this evening. Makes yer head spin.

All of this due to the team’s ridiculous medical issues. Time to spin the Giant Wheel of Bruins Injuries and see what today brings.

Byron Bitz, Steve Begin and Marco Sturm all either missing practice or leaving early because of unspecific injuries. Marc Savard and Andrew Ference still out for the long haul.

Meanwhile, players who have returned from injury are still not themselves, it seems. Patrice Bergeron was a shadow of himself on Monday against Ottawa. Whatever’s wrong with Dennis Wideman continues to help him produce a horrific season, his offensive numbers and plus/minus way down from last year and he looks like he’s skating through quicksand.

Milan Lucic is not himself yet, sad as that is to admit. In his six games back from being out for an extended period with a high ankle sprain, he has not really shown us the Looch of old just yet. Six games, no goals, two assists. It gets worse. A meagre 4 shots on net in those games and a -5. The good news is he does have 19 hits over that stretch so he does continue to throw the body. No fights, however.

The thing is the Bruins need him to be a force to be successful. They need him hitting, smashing, scoring and providing that emotional leadership role that we’re all sure he can supply when at his best. It’s probably going to take a little time to get that back along with his skating legs, his timing, everything. Meanwhile, we all wait and hope we’ll see the return of the Force that they call Gino.

The bottom line is the Bruins need a lot of things right now and I’mnot sure what the near horizon has to offer. Like I’ve stated before, it’s basically survival time until after the Olympics when we can hopefully sort things out.

Drew Larman to the rescue.

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