( Photo Credits: Steve Babineau / NHLI via Getty Images )

By: Nathan Anderson | Follow me on Twitter @nathandrsn

For the last three and a half months, I have been across the Atlantic Ocean in Europe. I was there as part of a study abroad program, but what it has meant for me as a fan of our beloved Bruins is that I became largely disconnected from following my favorite team. It was challenging to keep track of the B’s from over there, and at times I’d go a whole week not knowing what had happened in Boston. 

There are a couple of reasons for this. The first is the time difference. At the best of times, I was five hours ahead of the east coast time zone, and for the last month, I was often six hours ahead. This makes it very difficult to watch games when they start games, typically at midnight or one in the morning. I also did not have access to a convenient way to watch the games. I didn’t have NESN, and they certainly weren’t broadcasting games on European cable. 

So, for the last few months, a lot of my news and information on the team has been coming from Twitter, YouTube, or articles produced by my teammates here at BNG. It’s been intriguing to be removed from the actual viewing of the games and trying to decipher what my general opinion of the team and their chances going into this year’s playoffs are just by reading reactions, especially because, as we all know, we can become pretty extreme when we react to what happens on the ice. As one can imagine, it’s been challenging to get an accurate sense of how this season has been going and what the Bruins’ chances are heading into the playoffs coming up shortly. 

What I do know, though, is that with six games left, our Bruins find themselves battling with the Capitals for who will get the top wild-card spot in the playoffs and face a monumental challenge ahead. As I watched the recent game against the Blues, I couldn’t help but think back to the 2019 Stanley Cup Final. I think we all realized when the clock struck zero in game seven that the Bruins core may have just missed their best opportunity to get a second championship. I don’t think any of us realized just how good that opportunity as compared to the one that lies ahead now.

Yes, the Bruins finally made a move for that top-pairing defenseman we’ve all been begging for. It cost an arm and a leg to get him, but Hampus Lindholm should hopefully be a stud playing alongside Charlie McAvoy if he can get healthy for the first round. The problem, as I’m sure most people are aware, is that the rest of the Atlantic Division, and the Eastern Conference as a whole, also brought in reinforcements at the deadline. There are multiple teams that are stacked and poised to make a run at the Cup, so the Bruins cannot afford to slip up if they want to be a serious threat. 

Those challenges, added to the fact that someone like Patrice Bergeron is out of contract this summer makes the idea that the Bruins’ window could be closing soon even more realistic. My time in Europe was great, but I’m ready to watch this team do what they can to give guys like Bergeron and Marchand another chance to hoist the Cup as teammates. The BNG team here will have coverage leading up to and during the playoffs, so if you find yourself in a situation like me where you can’t watch at home, stay tuned to the website, and our writers’ Twitter feeds to keep up to date!