Providence Bruins eliminated from playoffs.


The Providence Bruins were knocked out of their Calder Cup race tonight. Their 3-2 overtime loss marks the end of a very up-and-down season for the Baby Black and Gold. Ryan Spooner earned an assist on Providence’s last goal of the season.

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The Providence Bruins organization deserve a lot of credit for getting as far as they did this year. They P-Bruins found their best talent plundered throughout the season, and it was questionable if they were going to make the post-season at all. Still, head coach Bruce Cassidy did a fantastic job of molding his AHL talent (and a few call-ups from the ECHL) to get his team to where they did this year.

So, a big Causeway Crowd *stick tap* to the P-Bruins and their efforts their season.

A separate *stick tap* goes out to the Bourque family. Raymond Bourque has two sons (Ryan and Chris) playing for the Wolf Pack.

Now with the season over, the Bruins organization can now take a look at their roster and see who amongst the current Providence roster should be invited to the big-B’s training camp in September. Assuming that Ryan Spooner, Zach Trotman, and David Pastrnak are all going back to Boston for the start of the season, there is still a half-dozen players who could make the big club.

As you know, the B’s are in cap jail. The Bruins are trapped by a series of long-term, no-trade clauses. Unless they get extremely lucky and are able to move several of their assets, promoting up from the AHL is the smartest move they can make for next year.

There are at least six players, all with some NHL experience who could move up into a role in Boston. Five of them played in NHL games this season for the Black and Gold.

There are already spots available. With Gregory Campbell and Daniel Paille not returning, the fourth line is essentially empty. Hopefully, Claude Julien (if he’s still here in September) will learn from previous mistakes and not try to put a player like Ryan Spooner on the B’s fourth line.

Alexander Khokhlachev, Seth Griffith, Justin Florek, and Colin Stuart could be ready to break through and help form the core of a new Merlot Line. The first three are young journeyman who have solid skills and could be useful in the Bruins partial re-build. Colin Stuart is a journeyman forward who could surprise a lot of people (he had seven shots on goal tonight against Hartford and fourteen during the series).

On the defensive side, the Bruins have a few options as well. If the Bruins do the smart thing and let Matt Bartkowski go, there will be a need for young (and hopefully more consistent) talent on the roster for the 2015-16 season.

David Warsofsky and Joe Morrow are the best options the Bruins have right now if they want to recruit from within. They’d be a good complement to some of the players already committed to next season, and it would finally prove that the B’s are ready to make some wholesale changes to their current system.

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