Maybe some fresh legs will do the trick.
The Bruins have now lost two in a row after they followed up Thursday’s home loss to the New York Islanders with a road loss Saturday to the lowly Carolina Hurricanes, who hadn’t won in April and had won once in their prior 15 games.
Sure, Milan Lucic broke out of his scoring drought. But after a goal off his body, he reverted to his horrible form of the last couple weeks. Nathan Horton was nowhere to be found and the Bruins had just enough breakdowns defensively and in net to lose 4-2.
Now the reinforcements are on their way. Patrice Bergeron’s ability to take the morning skate with the team in Raleigh means he’s probably within a game or two of returning to the lineup. And Saturday the Bruins made Carl Soderberg’s three-year contract, with approval from the NHL for the transfer, official. He’s expected to join the team Wednesday and be available to play as early as that night’s game against Buffalo.
The Bruins’ depth has been depleted of late by injuries to Bergeron and Brad Marchand, and by the unproductive play of the likes of Lucic, Horton and Rich Peverley over the course of the first 41 games of this shortened season. Now there might be some actual competition for jobs, which is what I wrote about for CBSBoston.com Saturday night.
As bad as the Bruins have looked most nights lately, there’s been some highlights, including Jaromir Jagr’s ageless ability to take on added minutes and be productive, and the continued improvement of Matt Bartkowski and the rookie defenseman’s ability to push Dougie Hamilton into the press box. Now maybe some of the lackluster performers will be inspired to play better if the alternative is finally seeing minutes cut or their sweater taken away.