By: Mark Allred ( @BlackAndGold277 )
The Providence Bruins continue to struggle in the early parts of the 2016-17 season sitting in seventh place in the Atlantic Division (Last) and thirteenth place (Second to Last) in the Eastern Conference. With many Baby B’s players in and out of the lineup for emergency recalls it’s hard to create chemistry with so many players joining the team for the first time. Regardless of how much time is spent with the top minor-pro team of the B’s, one area of the AHL’s franchise that is also haveing a hard time adjusting to the new season is goaltender Malcolm Subban.
— Providence Bruins (@AHLBruins) October 29, 2016
After suffering a serious throat injury in Portland, Maine on February 5, 2016, from a Seth Griffith shot during pre-game warmups against the Pirates, his return to the ice after medical clearance has not been the same and seems like the tragic event that ended his year maybe coming back to haunt him. Although the 22-year-old Toronto, Ontario native worked hard over the offseason summer workouts, but his timing and positioning have been a concern to him and coaching staff. So far this season Subban has appeared in five games and has a 0-4-1 record with a goals-against-average of 4.10 and .854 save percentage ranking him close to the bottom of the AHL many goaltending categories.
— Providence Bruins (@AHLBruins) October 30, 2016
Rhonda Labush who’s a member of the Providence Bruins Fan Club, an aggressive committee member with Providence Bruins Charities such as the Rhode Island Special Olympics, the Hasbro Children’s Hospital and season ticket holder since 1992 brings up a valid point. Labush suggests Subban’s struggles along with other goaltenders that have been cycled through the minor system in recent years may be affected by the lack of coaching as the top affiliate of the Boston Bruins doesn’t have a goaltending coach who travels with the team but relies’s under the tutelage of Bruins crease coach Bob Essensa when the team is conveniently close in proximity.
This could be a growing concern with future generations off netminders that will need the proper knowledge passed down to them as they build confidence moving forward. Now this might not be the answers to Subban’s awful start, but it’s something the Bruins organization should look into further with a goaltender like Dan Vladar making a name for himself as he climbs the ranks of minor-pro hockey in his continued development.
Next game for the 2-4-2 Providence Bruins is Friday night November 4, 2016, when the Baby B’s start a three-game home stand starting with 2-2-1 Lehigh Valley Phantoms from the Dunk in Providence, Rhode Island.
Here are highlights of last night’s Bruins 3-2 regulation loss to the Syracuse Crunch.
Follow me on Twitter @BlackAndGold277