Charlie Coyle was acquired by the B’s back in February of 2019. To acquire him, Boston sent Ryan Donato and a conditional 2019 fifth-round pick that turned into a 2019 fourth-round pick to the Minnesota Wild.
When brought in, Coyle was having a pretty good season for the Wild as he had scored 10 goals and 18 assists in 60 games. However, he struggled after joining the Black and Gold, posting just two goals and four assists in 21 games.
Coyle rebounded in 2019-20, however. He recorded one of the best offensive seasons of his career as he registered 16 goals and 21 assists in 70 games. With Coyle playing well and him fitting the Bruins bill of being a Massachusetts native, the B’s gave Coyle a six-year extension with a $5.25 million average annual value (AAV) in November of 2019.
Charlie Coyle failed to play up to his new contract in its first year.
With such a good season from their third-line center last year, there were pretty high expectations for Coyle this season. However, he failed to meet these expectations as he had one of the worst seasons of his career.
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This season, Coyle recorded just six goals and 10 assists in 51 games. Coyle looked uninterested most of the time as he even failed to effectively possess the puck like he had in seasons prior. In everyone of his previous seasons, Coyle’s Corsi was at least 51%, however, this season it dropped all the way to 47.3%.
So, not only did Coyle struggle to put up points this season, he struggled to play his own game. He had put together a reputation of being this big-bodied center that not only could use his frame to protect the puck but also skate passed defenders.
He failed to do either of these things this season and often looked like he was straying from the game that made him successful. It often looked like Coyle was trying to do too much and trying to be flashy player — trying to deke around defenders — that he just isn’t.
However, Coyle may have an excuse for his miserable season. After the season ended, it was revealed that Coyle was playing through an undisclosed injury and would being getting surgery to repair the injury during the offseason. About a week later, it was revealed that Coyle would be getting knee procedure done, revealing the injury that Coyle played through to be a knee injury.
This injury definitely could’ve hampered Coyle’s performance this season. However, with how poorly he played with the injury, he probably should’ve missed more than just five games this season.
With the fact that Coyle was playing through an injury in the back of my mind, I’m going to be a bit easier with Coyle’s grade. At first, I was thinking somewhere in the D’s with Jake DeBrusk and Sean Kuraly, both neither of these guys were playing through an injury.