What an idea it has been from Bruins´ head coach Bruce Cassidy! His Bruins lost three in a row for the first time in the season without getting at least a point. And with one simple move, a move many asked for: play David Krejci as a top line center.
And since then, the Bruins won their last three games and the newly created top line has been delivering big-time. David Krejci has one goal and five assists for 6 points and +7 plus/minus, David Pastrnak has the same numbers, but +6 rating and Brad Marchand benefited form this change the most, Marchand collected three goals and five assists with +6 rating in last three games.
Brad Marchand just recently ended his 7-game goaless drought and right after breaking that streak (against New York Islanders two weeks ago) he went three games without a point. After David Krejci´s promotion to the top line, Marchand is suddenly playing his best hockey of the season.
Bergeron´s chemistry with Pastrnak and Marchand was arguably the best in the NHL, but since Bergeron´s injury (12 games as of now), it has not been pleasant for either Pastrnak or Marchand, whatsoever with having Colby Cave centering them… But David Krejci is not Colby Cave, he is still a top-quality center in the NHL.
Good center might be the missing piece for the Bruins
Well, this has something to tell the Bruins. First, keep that top line together, of course. Secondly, the Bruins need a quality center, even with Bergeron back. Boston´s fans have been calling for reenforcement up front since forever. But who should the Bruins aim, Rick Nash-type player to combine as a right-winger with David Krejci, or someone else?
Yes, the Bruins should acquire quality center. Fluto Shinzawa from The Athletic talked about the possibility of trading for Charlie Coyle from Minnesota or Jeff Carter from Los Angeles. Bingo. That´s what the Bruins really need. When Bergeron will be back, top line should stay hot.
David Krejci has a very formidable season and Jake DeBrusk was having quite a run before being out with unfortunate concussion. But what about the third line? What about the potential scenario of Krejci´s or Bergeron´s injury? Acquiring a good quality center (like Coyle or Carter, maybe even Nugent-Hopkins) would do the trick.
Why? The Bruins have so many great young wingers, Danton Heinen, Jake DeBrusk, Anders Bjork, or Peter Cehlarik and Zach Senyshyn from Providence. David Backes or Ryan Donato showed that they are playing their best hockey on the wing and Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson has been solid in the middle, but not quite what the Bs are looking for on a consistent basis.
Without Bergeron and yet without any trade being realized, the Bruins are still able to deliver with just one good center, just what they showed in last three games. And what about having three of them? The Bruins are a play-off team with ability to deliver and get some results even with so many injuries. If they want to have legitimate chance to win the Stanley Cup, aside from not having injuries, Boston needs a help in the center position.