“New Year’s Resolutions.” It seems we make them every turn of the calendar.
But, how often do we follow through on them? How often do we lead the way? Well, the Boston Bruins will need to look to their leaders in 2022 to truly resolve some of the issues plaguing this placated team at the end of 2021.
More or less, the B’s will literally need the “same Marchy” in the new year to fire up a roster –and organization– that has hit a compounded run of bad luck mixed with middling mediocrity. Combine that with COVID and you’ve got a recipe for anything but success.
Which is why, as the Black N’ Gold blog recently pointed out, team leaders like Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron (even new signee Taylor Hall) all spoke out on the NHL’s handling of the game as it relates to the health, happiness and business of the sport. To wit:
This is EXACTLY the type of pucked off passion the “A” and the “C” of the B’s need to show in order for the team to get back to the “ABCs” of winning hockey games — something assistant coach Joe Sacco did his best to accomplish during a brief winning streak before the COVID-induced shutdown of the league (and a finally COVID-free head coach Bruce Cassidy returned to the bench amidst lackluster fanfare).
So, how do the Bruins set that tone when they return to the ice? How do they rediscover the identity of the Spoked-B that truly speaks louder than words when their play is hard, fast, tough, gritty and fun to watch? It’s simple.
With everyone , Charlie Coyle included, back to full health and perhaps an even healthier Tuukka Rask rejoining the team (if you “B”-lieve the Twitterverse rumor mill), then letting the leaders bring that fiery emotion to the ice from missing out on Christmas, New Year’s and now the Olympics is the number one priority.
Championing an attitude from the top line and top pairing on down to the recently-returned taxi squad roster that gets angry, gets intense, gets pucks deep and bodies to the net… that’s the goal (and will produce goals!).
Trusting in your best players to be at their best both on and off the ice, during practices and pre-game skates, battling league cellar-dwellars or top playoff opponents… that’s the aggressive game plan.
And no longer making excuses. For anyone. From David Pastrnak to Nick Foligno to Don Sweeney to Cam Neely. From the front office to the font of the net! No more excuses. Not in 2022.
The Boston Bruins no longer have the luxury of time. In fact, too much time has been lost. And losing out on perhaps the final “prime” season of your top team leaders… that’s just not fathomable. That’s not how this team’s story, this organization’s 21st-Century arc, should end.
So, while the calendar year is coming to an unceremonious end, perhaps 2022 can be start of something. For the B’s, for the city, for everyone! That’s a “New Year’s Resolution” we all can get behind.
Here’s hoping Boston’s best and brightest in black n’ gold can lead the way and make it happen!