Shawn Thornton Not Welcome Back In Boston

 

Shawn Thornton Ex Bruin

In what I can only describe as a surprise move, the Boston Bruins will NOT be resigning Shawn Thornton.  I say surprise move because the Bruins are such a well rounded team where the sum of the parts are what matters and Shawn Thornton is one of the best fourth line players currently in the NHL.

It will be interesting to see where he ends up signing. A team like the Toronto Maple Leafs may want to kick the tires on this one.  Thornton would add the energy and grit that the Leafs are missing.  At a 1.1 million dollar price tag, any team would benefit with having Thornton on their fourth line.

Let’s see how things play out when the free agency begins July 1st.

Congratulations to The LA Kings

2014 Stanley Cup Winners LA Kings

LA Kings Win The Stanley Cup

We here at Gretzkys Office would like to pass on our Congratulations to this years Stanley Cup winners, the Los Angeles Kings.

Once again in today’s NHL, the Kings have proven just how out of whack competition levels are and how lopsided the conferences are.  Once again we are treated with another Western Conference winner in the Stanley Cup.

The New York Rangers just never really stood a chance and were unable to get anything of value together to fight off the Kings.  Even after the Kings played a grueling series against the Blackhawks, they proved they had plenty in the tank to fight off the Rangers.

Having won their second Cup in the last 3 seasons, The Kings are positioning themselves to become a dynasty team in the new NHL.  As long as players like Quick and Dougherty keep this team going, there is no telling how many more cups they can win this decade.  Let’s see what the Kings bring to the table next season.

It’s going to be a good one.

Where Do The Boston Bruins Go From Here?

 

Boston Bruins Hockey Logo

Well it’s been a while since the Bruins lost their bid to advance to the conference finals to the Montreal Canadians, and now the shock is gone and the dust has settled.  So, where do the Boston Bruins go from here?

It’s hard to say.  After a stellar regular season that say the Bruins at the top of the Eastern conference a lot of people in the know had Boston pegged to go to the NHL finals for a chance to win the Stanley Cup.

But how much blame can be put on this hockey team juggernaut?  In the playoffs a hot goalie can make or break a series and Montreal’s Carey Price was on top of his game.

I would hate if the Bruins just hacked up their roster, made a ton of front office changes and just gutted the team.  I don’t think it’s needed, but some retooling definitely needs to happen.  Here is my take.  First off the untouchables, the core, the soul and the heart of the Boston Bruins that should stick around next year and give the Bruins another shot.

GM Peter Chiarelli -When a team fails, the GM can quickly find himself in the hot seat, but Chiarelli needs to stay in Bean Town.  Since joining the Bruins, he has brought in some great players, put together some of the best 4 line teams hockey has seen in a while.  Made some great trades and has even made some tough trades in the case of Kessel and Seguin, two young players you would hate to trade away, but did not fit the team.

Coach Claude Julien – Julien and Chiarelli work in tandem and both have a great idea of the big picture when it comes to the Boston Bruins.  His coaching style of being responsible in both ends of the ice and capitalizing on the mistakes of opponents is what the Bruins are all about.  Julien has had a lot of success in Boston during the regular season and has already brought Boston to the big dance twice in his 7 years behind the Boston Bench.

Zdeno Chara – Chara is the cornerstone of the Bruins defense.  He is getting older, but still has a few years left of Norris level hockey.  Getting rid of Chara would be a huge no no!

Dougie Hamilton – Young defenseman Hamilton still has some learning to do, but has already proven himself as a top defenseman capable of great things.  He has flashes of offensive brilliance that are reminiscent of the Bruins great Bobby Orr and it would be insane to get rid of this young talent.

Torey Krug – Krug, another young defenseman probably won’t turn into the next Zedno Chara, but he is going to be a great second line defenseman with lots of up potential.

Patrice Bergeron – Bergeron is the heart of the team amongst forwards.  One of the great two way hockey players and a tour de force at the faceoff circle, there is no Boston Bruins without him.

David Krejci – Krejci is one of the most underrated players on the Bruins squad.  His ability to slow or speed up the game and create open ice is bar none.  He has a ton of hockey vision and can create plays out of nowhere and is the most creative player on the team.

Milian Lucic – Lucic needs to stick around for a variety of reasons.  One he is a brute that can tire out and intimidate any opponent and he can also score which is a huge bonus.

Tuuka Rask – Rask is proving himself to be a premiere goalie with each and every season.  Still a young goaltender, he is only getting after every season.  After Tim Thomas left Boston, Rask took the goaltending reins and proved himself.

Other then these untouchables, the rest of the team is under the gun.  Lately Boston has been a working class team where the sum of the parts are what matters.  They play as a well oiled machine so it’s just a matter of swapping a few pieces to kick it up a notch.  Hopefully the Bruins pick up a good UFA or two during the off season and get a good trade in to bring the team to the next level.

Goooooooooooooo Bruins.  See you in October!

And The Stanley Cup Is About To Begin

Stanley Cup PLayoffs Chart

The Road to the Stanley Cup

Tomorrow (Wednesday June 4th) The NHL Stanley Cup playoffs are about to begin.  I thought I could call the shots and predict who would be playing and I could not have been further from the truth.

I just figured it would be a Boston Bruins vs. Chicago Blackhawks repeat.  Turns out I picked the wrong ponies and am now sadly looking at a New York Rangers vs. LA Kings final.  Let’s just call it the Media Series since it’s the American east vs. West media hubs.

First of all, I did not see this final coming at all.  I had zero faith in the Rangers and I felt the west was just too strong to allow LA to sneak through.  I didn’t see it coming so much, that my playoff hockey pool is really going to go downhill fast as I only have two LA players on my roster!

I don’t know if this is going to be a good series, but New York has been surprising this playoffs.  After Montreal took out the Boston Bruins I thought they would have rolled right over the Rangers, but New York persevered   I guess the morale is, never count out any team in the playoffs.

Of course, if I have to guess, I would predict that the LA Kings will win the cup in 6 games.

Let’s see how wrong I am!