This season has been magical across the board. There have been more highs than lows with very little to complain about. In fact, things have been so good that if anything does go sour it is noticeable. On of the Boston Bruins improvements is on the power play.
Boston Bruins Improvements Down The Stretch
This script sounds familiar to last season. As the playoffs drew nearer last season, there was one area that was lacking; the power play. Despite the firepower of David Pastrnak, Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, and Charlie McAvoy it would never be solved. In fact, in the month of April 2022, they finished with a measly 9.1%. That was a sixteen percent drop from March.
Fast forward a year and the Boston Bruins are running into the same issue. In the month of December, the power play was scorching hot finishing with 23.5%. However, that percentage has dropped with each passing month.
This simply is not ideal heading into the playoffs. That is a Boston Bruins improvement that needs to be addressed.
How Bad Is It Really
As fans watch the games, it is apparent that it hasn’t been great. But in the eyes of Head Coach Jim Montgomery, it has also been lacking. Montgomery went on to say, “Our power play is kind of stalled,” said Boston Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery. “It’s been flat, right? And if you look at the Bergeron unit, they’ve scored two goals over the last I don’t know how many games and only one goal really was an in-zone goal was DeBrusk’s his first game back from injury.”
To make matters worse, the Bruins have only scored six power-play goals since returning from the All-Star break. The once top-ranked special teams unit is tied for the eighth fewest goals in that same time frame. In addition, the chances they’ve generated have not been great. They have only 7.13 xGoals for. Boston has only generated 19 high-danger chances with 15 getting on the net. Getting shots towards goal haven’t been a problem, but cashing in has been an issue and its led to experimenting.
How Can It Be Fixed
With the Boston Bruins already locking up a playoff spot, getting healthy is first priority. Locking up home ice as well, but also this power play. Jim Montgomery has wasted no time experimenting. As practices have gone underway he has stated, “We have the opportunity to experiment, so we’re experimenting, and we are also looking at how does Charlie McAvoy have a lot of success? He has a lot of success attacking down the right wing in the offensive zone.”
And that is exactly what they are doing. With the plethora of defensemen capable of quarterbacking they are giving each member a shot. As of last game, newly acquired Dmitry Orlov was placed on the first unit. Orlov has been sensational since joining. He has three goals and 10 points in eight games played. Being on the power play is new to him and something he never got to do when with the Washington Capitals. Orlov has looked solid as a two-way player and looks to do whatever he can to help the Bruins.
The other option has been with Charlie McAvoy on the second unit. He was flanked by Hampus Lindholm next to him, but with him injured that’s turned into Matt Grzelcyk. That is the beautiful thing about this time now, working out the kinks and getting better. Because as it stands, the Bruins rank 25th in the league since the break with 13.7% power play success. Despite being the best team, the Boston Bruins improvements lie there.