The Boston Bruins were entering 2016 right where they are now: with a chance to earn a playoff. However, one of things that went against them was having one of the younger teams in the league. But even with most of the players being age 30 or younger, usually having a young team could bode well depending on the chemistry. The chemistry was there, but add to the fact that the Bruins had to get through a tough Eastern conference meant they had work to do to get to the playoffs. And unfortunately, they came up just 3 points short of a wild card spot and missed the playoffs for the second straight year.
But one of the biggest storylines was the development of these young players – most notably David Pastrnak. Before he was drafted in 2014, Pastrnak started working out for Boston. Throughout his time training, the scouts saw what we now see on the ice – that David had the potential to be one of the best young players in the league. He is definitely proving it this season, as he continues to score at will and be a big part of a Bruins offense that has the potential to be much better than what is on the stat sheet.
When you look at the Bruins schedule for the second half of last season, you see the same scenario setting up: Boston is not winning the games they are supposed to win. That is one of things that doomed them in the second half. From March 15 to March 24, the Bruins went on a 5 game losing streak and went on to end the month losing six of their final seven games. When you lose that many games that close to the playoff, some reevaluating had to go on in order to get this team back on the right track.
Fast forward to the start of this season, and it seems the Bruins are starting to get their act together. Yes, there are a still issues that the team needs to work on, but they’re also a young team that is showing a lot of promise as well. It is showing as they are sitting in third place in the Atlantic, so they would be in if the playoffs started today. However, this is a young season, so Boston will need to avoid the errors that cost them earlier this year if they want to stay on track and make the playoffs in 2017.