Boston Bruins: Brett Connolly Earning His Place In The Lineup


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2 trades the Boston Bruins must make to secure the Stanley Cup /

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  • The Boston Bruins are starting to see some results from Brett Connolly. After being relatively invisible on the scoreboard in his first nine games as a member of the Boston Bruins, Connolly has scored at least one point in each of his last three games, including a goal in each of the last two. Connolly was highly touted coming out of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft sixth overall as a sniper, but has never really gotten the opportunity to prove that thus far. The Tampa Bay Lightning, the team that drafted Connolly, had way too much forward depth to provide Connolly a top-six role, and that resulted in his eventual trade to the Bruins.

    Brett Connolly is fighting for every game he’s given now, having been a healthy scratch against the Arizona Coyotes after the insurgence of energy and goals from the third line being composed of  Chris Kelly, Ryan Spooner, Jimmy Hayes, and the fourth line being composed of Zac Rinaldo, Jonas Kemppainen, and Tyler Randell. Connolly was able to return to the lineup due to Matt Beleskey suffering an upper body injury and missing some time, and that has led to very positive results from Connolly, scoring in both games since returning to the lineup. It’s still unclear how the lines will look once Beleskey is healthy enough to return to the lineup, but Connolly is certainly making a strong case to not be relegated to the press box again. 

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    The Bruins will certainly have some decisions to make on their lineup when Beleskey returns, especially with Jonas Kemppainen having scored his first goal in the NHL and adding an assist on Friday against the New York Islanders. The Bruins did a lot of line shuffling in the game versus the Islanders, including moving Ryan Spooner to the fourth line and Zac Rinaldo to the third line. Claude Julien will continue to shuffle his lines until he finds a working combination that is consistent, and responsible. Having so many NHL caliber players who can contribute at the forward position like the Bruins have is a good problem to have, and the internal competition should ensure the Bruins remain near the top of the league in offense for the foreseeable future.

    Follow Brandon Share-Cohen on Twitter @BShareCohen to discuss all things Bruins and sports

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