:

4

:

6

Final

:

6

:

10

Final

:

5

:

7

Final

3 Ways Don Sweeney Can Turn His Image Around Quickly

To say the Boston Bruins organization is unstable at this point is an understatement. There is currently no head coach, the team is down an assistant coach, and the search is on for a new skating coach after the departure of Kim Brandvold. General Manager Don Sweeney, by all accounts, has not had his contract extended by the team with the NHL Draft and free agency around the corner. And then there is the status of Patrice Bergeron and the upcoming contract talks with David Pastrnak. That’s a lot of work to do for someone who doesn’t have a contract.

Sweeney has drawn the ire of Bruins fans after the awkward firing of former Head Coach Bruce Cassidy. The Bruins’ faithful had already been frustrated after a first-round exit in the playoffs and a track record of drafting players that has been suspect at best. And we haven’t even touched on the many free-agent signings that did not bring the bang for the buck that was expected. All of this leads to anxiety with the NHL Draft coming in just a few short weeks and free agency to follow with only about $3 million for the team to spend. Patience is wearing thin on Causeway Street.

But as daunting as these tasks seem for Sweeney, the Harvard graduate can make three moves soon that might be best for the team and its embattled general manager:

Hire a coach who can develop young talent.

One of the reasons for the change in coaching was a difference in philosophy when it comes to playing young players on the roster. Sweeney felt that Cassidy did not give the younger prospects more of a chance and that the youngsters were afraid to make mistakes. The new coach should be someone who can be more patient with less experienced players, and, to be fair, Sweeney will have to do a better job of drafting them. The team would be better off hiring former Providence Bruins coach Jay Leach or Providence College coach Nate Leaman.

Re-sign David Pastrnak

Much of the disdain for Bruins’ management can be lessened by announcing a contract extension for David Pastrnak. The team’s leading goal scorer can become an unrestricted free agent after the next season, and the team has to decide what type of deal Pastrnak is willing to take. If the team can sign Pastrnak to a Charlie McAvoy-like deal (8 years, $76 million), then that would be a major win for Sweeney and should be favorable among the fan base.

Hire Marc Savard as an assistant coach

This seems like a minor move, but Savard is a fan favorite as a former Bruin who helped turn the franchise around as a player. Savard has had a great year coaching the Windsor Spitfires in the Ontario Hockey League and could help a power play that struggled in Boston last season. Savard can also be insurance if the new coach doesn’t work out or be a candidate if Sweeney is fired and a new general manager wants to pick the next coach.

It has been a tumultuous start to the off-season for Boston, and fans are concerned that the team is headed in the wrong direction. Will the team re-build or re-tool? Who will be the coach? Is Pastrnak in the plans for the future? Many more questions exist. But Sweeney can help himself with two good hires and an extension for his best goal scorer.

Season 2. Episode 18. Battling Adversity Bruins Benders Podcast

The Bruins rebound after a 3-game skid. NHL ratings are down on ESPN and Turner. Don’t mess with the chemistry. Concerns about the Bruins veterans wearing down. Plus Beauties and Benders. 
  1. Season 2. Episode 18. Battling Adversity
  2. Season 2. Episode 17. Renewing The Rivalry
  3. Season 2. Episode 16. Hot Mic
  4. Season 2. Episode 15. West Coast Weekend
  5. Season 2. Episode 14. The Winter Classic

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pat Verbeek: Year One as General Manager in Review

It has been 365 days since Pat Verbeek took the “big chair” as the Anaheim Ducks general manager. He has been through his first trade deadline, NHL entry draft, re-signing player period, and free agency period. To say Verbeek’s been busy over the last calendar year would be an understatement. While currently doing his best […]

Read More

Believe it or not, the Columbus Blue Jackets are rebuilding the right way

There is a right way to do an NHL rebuild and a wrong way. The wrong way is to draft offensive talent or “the best player available.” In the case of the Columbus Blue Jackets (currently on pace for 54 points,) even though it may be difficult to see, the organization is rebuilding the right […]

Read More

Red Wings Place Adam Erne on Waivers

On Saturday afternoon, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported that the Detroit Red Wings had placed forward Adam Erne on waivers. Ahead of this move, the Red Wings sent down Jonatan Berggren to make room to activate Filip Zadina off of injured reserve. Zadina was then assigned to Grand Rapids on a conditioning stint but still counts […]

Read More