Boston Bruins: Urho Vaakanainen may get his time to shine

Boston Bruins, Urho Vaakanainen #58 (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Boston Bruins, Urho Vaakanainen #58 (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Recent Boston Bruins practice lines have Urho Vaakanainen partnering Zdeno Chara; you’ve got to hope he seizes upon the situation.

The Boston Bruins may have their hand forced by Charlie McAvoy‘s ‘unfit’ status, to give Urho Vaakanainen a good solid look in the upcoming exhibition game and round-robin tournament.

Here is the player widely regarded as the best defensive prospect currently within the Boston Bruins organisation, even if Jakub Zboril is trying to make this more of a debating point.

Much like the aforementioned Charlie McAvoy, he isn’t able to blow our minds with his offensive numbers ala Torey Krug, but equally he does appear to have a ceiling higher than the bottom pairing in the NHL.

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Providence Bruins’ head coach Jay Leach has been particularly impressed this season, telling NESN, “I think the offensive stuff is starting to come a bit more naturally to him.”

Given the potential to have already lost two defensemen in Torey Krug and Zdeno Chara, the emergence of Urho Vaakanainen could prove welcome relief when the Seattle expansion draft swings around.

Thankfully, the Boston Bruins possess a coaching staff that understands exactly how useful a veteran like Chara is for a young defenseman and by pairing Urho with him, they’re sending the youngster a clear message that they hold him in high regard.

The last young player, after all, to be paired with Chara for any extended period is Charlie McAvoy and look at how impressively he’s come along, even if this scenario has only come about due to him being ‘unfit to play’.

You have to hope that at least in the exhibition fixture with the Columbus Blue Jackets that Urho Vaakanainen gets a proper chance in the line-up.

Obviously, you would like to see him make it stick, but equally we want McAvoy back and firing all cylinders as well.

The upcoming Stanley Cup Playoffs may be a little too soon, but it’s surely only a matter of time before Vaakanainen forces himself into the line-up, no doubt at the behest of Jeremy Lauzon or Connor Clifton.

Next. McAvoy must find consistency in the post-season. dark

Either way, you’d have to see Steven Kampfer, John Moore and Kevan Miller‘s days as very much numbered; the Boston Bruins have a wealth of young, fast and hungry blue-liners raring to take their chance.