It’s one of those stats that doesn’t sit that well with a lot of us. We’ve all been ragging on the Bruins about it. 1-for-17 on the power play. Sure, the team is coming up with creative ways to win games already. At this point, opposing coaches might be asking some of their players to push a penalty. (I know that’s not the case, but the Bruins have shown they’re more dangerous at even strength.) Well, once again the media decided to chirp up the head coach. This time, Coach Claude Julien chirped a little back.
“I thought I was going to get away with at least one day without that question,” Julien said with a smile. “All I’m going to say is our power play mirrored the way some of our best players played. Our best players weren’t our best players. Our fourth line did the job to keep us in there, but again, it was one of those games where we weren’t very good and it reflects everything. The results really haven’t been there, the end results, but the power play, we’re four games in and I’d say three of the four games we’ve moved the puck well.”
People have to take a step back here and understand, I could throw a lot of things at you guys, whether it’s L.A. that won a Stanley Cup without a great power play, I think Tampa right now has just said they don’t even practice their power play because they realize that the 5-on-5 play is what wins Stanley Cups.” (The Tampa Bay Lightning’s 4-1-0 record put them ahead of the Boston Bruins by a point in the Eastern Conference.)
“People have to take a step back here and maybe breath a little easier here with this stuff, and not make a mountain out of our power play. We certainly want it to work well, but it’s not the end of the world. We’re still winning some hockey games. We’re still unbeaten in regulation and our power play is giving us some momentum, and it’s given us some chances. We hope, with time, we’ll get more results than we have so far.”
That’s the nicest ‘sit down and shut up’ I’ve heard in a while. He has gotten the team into the playoffs every year since he took over as head coach. If anyone is going to end up with a statue around here in the near future, it is likely to be Julien. He has proven that he has a varied assortment of approaches to get the team to score. His development program in conjunction with the AHL and ECHL teams have given us players like Tim Thomas, Tuukka Rask, Brad Marchand, Johnny Boychuk, etc. OK, coach. I’m not going to back seat coach anymore. If it’s not important, then it’s not important. You’ve gotten us this far, and you’ve earned my loyalty.