The Bruins closed out their preseason slate on Thursday evening with a 3-1 win over the Rangers in New York.
It was a sluggish begin for the Bruins, who solely landed one shot on purpose within the opening 20 minutes. However Boston heated up as the sport carried on, with Charlie Coyle, Matthew Poitras, and A.J. Greer lighting the lamp en path to the victory at Madison Sq. Backyard.
Jeremy Swayman performed the complete recreation for the Bruins, stopping 22 of the 23 photographs that got here his approach within the win.
Listed here are just a few takeaways and observations from Thursday’s highway matchup.
Poitras proves that he belongs … once more
On the danger of sounding redundant from our earlier preseason takeaways, let’s run this train as soon as once more with regards to Matthew Poitras.
If it seems to be like an NHL participant, skates like an NHL participant, and performs like an NHL participant … it’s most likely an NHL participant.
Barring a catastrophic flip of occasions, it appears set in stone that the 19-year-old middle goes to interrupt camp with the Boston Bruins.
The 2022 second-round decide as soon as once more made probably the most of his last preseason contest, giving Boston the lead for good together with his third tally of the autumn simply 1:13 into the third interval. He completed with 13:21 of ice time, profitable 4 of his 5 faceoff alternatives.
Poitras closes out his preseason with 5 factors (three targets, two assists) over 5 video games, with the poised playmaker already displaying a willingness to place extra pucks on internet in Grade-A ice, somewhat than instinctively searching for out passing lanes in split-second conditions.
At this level, Poitras has accomplished every part requested of him.
“He simply appears to be in the fitting spots,” Montgomery stated of Poitras. “He has the puck so much as a result of he’s all the time in the fitting help place. After which when he will get the puck, his poised with the puck — he’s calm past his years with the puck.”
He capitalized early on in camp when tasked with skating between some elite play drivers like David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand. He was requested to play in back-to-back video games on Monday and Tuesday towards the Flyers and Capitals, and delivered with a highlight-reel purpose at TD Backyard.
And on Thursday, Jim Montgomery opted to fit the promising rookie additional down the depth chart to see if he may nonetheless drive play subsequent to a pair of potential linemates in Morgan Geekie and Trent Frederic.
As soon as once more, Poitras got here by means of.
The query about whether or not or not Poitras deserves a spot on Boston’s Opening Evening roster has been settled. The true check lies forward, as Boston could have a nine-game trial in place to see if Poitras has what it takes to stay round within the NHL full-time or ultimately get shipped again right down to the OHL.
Yeah, I imply, it definitely seems to be that approach,” Montgomery told The Boston Globe’s Kevin Paul Dupont when requested if Poitras has accomplished sufficient to make the group. “He’s earned the fitting to stay round for some time, that’s for positive.”
Coyle holds regular in top-six function
If Poitras is certainly skating with the Bruins on Oct. 11, one potential lineup tweak may see the rookie open the 12 months in a top-six function, with a stronger supporting solid round him serving to to ease his approach into an 82-game gauntlet.
However although Charlie Coyle may doubtlessly profit from such a lineup reshuffle if he bumps again right down to 3C, the veteran ahead pushed again towards stated assertion with an impactful recreation towards the Rangers.
Together with opening the scoring for Boston off a slick power-play sequence involving David Pastrnak and Pavel Zacha, Coyle was as marketed as a puck-possession horse within the offensive zone — extending time within the Rangers’ finish of the ice by shielding the puck alongside the boards and driving previous opposing skaters.
He even acquired right into a uncommon scrap with fellow Massachusetts product Jimmy Vesey after he objected to the North Studying native’s hit within the second interval.
No matter the place he slots into the lineup, Coyle needs to be a key cog up entrance for the Bruins in 2023-24.
The youngsters are alright
It might need been the Poitras present as soon as once more, however the remainder of Boston’s younger crop of skaters continued to carry their very own towards the Rangers.
Despite the fact that he didn’t determine into the scoresheet, Mason Lohrei shaped an efficient shutdown tandem alongside Brandon Carlo on Thursday evening. Regardless of having simply 28.5% of their faceoffs set within the offensive zone, the Bruins nonetheless held a 4-1 edge in photographs on purpose and outscored New York, 1-0, in Lohrei-Carlo’s 12:40 of 5v5 ice time collectively.
Lohrei completed with 20:13 of ice time and recorded 4 blocks within the victory.
It was a quieter evening for Johnny Beecher because the 2019 first-round decide tries for a spot on Boston’s checking unit.
However the 22-year-old ahead nonetheless landed two hits and logged 3:49 of shorthanded ice time towards the Rangers, and it nonetheless doesn’t appear to be his high competitor in veteran Patrick Brown has accomplished sufficient to essentially bump him out of the 4C spot.
Plenty of the main target has understandably been dedicated to youthful gamers like Poitras and Lohrei throughout preseason motion. However Thursday was additionally a really encouraging efficiency by just a few lineup regulars who had been fairly quiet in Morgan Geekie and Trent Frederic.
Frederic’s sturdy work alongside the boards and heads-up passing discovered Poitras alone within the slot en path to his third-period purpose, whereas Geekie helped arrange Greer’s empty-netter with a D-zone clear.
After relinquishing an early purpose from Kaapo Kakko, Swayman settled down briefly order, stopping 9 of the ten medium and high-danger photographs that the Rangers generated. Each he and Linus Ullmark needs to be able to go.
Not the strongest exhibiting from Boston’s third D pair of Ian Mitchell and Derek Forbort. Forbort’s poise and toughness on the PK is hard to disregard. Nonetheless, it stays to be seen if special-teams acumen is sufficient to overlook the lackluster outcomes he generates at 5v5 play.
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