It's pretty obvious now that this was the Boston Bruins' “going for it” year.

All the evidence you really need in that regard is the fact that they did everything in their power to squeeze themselves under the league's very tight $64.3 million salary cap, put in place to artificially depress player costs following the most recent lockout. The prime example here is Jarome Iginla's one-year deal, which carried a too-low salary of just $1.8 million, but was laden with huge and easily achieved bonuses that brought his total cap hit to a total of $6 million if all were achieved.

In essence, Peter Chiarelli pushed-all in on this iteration of the Boston Bruins as being the team most likely to win a Stanley Cup, and while obviously we can sit here today and say it didn't work out, it probably was the right bet. These Bruins won the Presidents' Trophy for having the biggest point total of any team in the NHL over 82 games, and you don't do that by accident. You might be able to make an argument that the Bruins weren't the actual best team in the NHL this season, given the overall strength of the Eastern Conference and so on, but they were without a doubt one of the top two or three. Chiarelli's bet that this team could win it all was a relatively sound one.

The NHL's record books are littered with “best” teams that didn't win a Stanley Cup — there's a “Presidents' Trophy curse” for a reason, after all — because the best team doesn't always win.

That's what happened Wednesday, right? Boston ran into a goodish team playing its best hockey of the season, backed by a positively molten goaltender who was already one of the absolute best at his job on earth even on bad days.

They ran into bad luck, lots of it, along the way as well. Carey Price wasn't giving them much, but when he did, they hit the post. Thirteen times. The Bruins only scored 16 goals in the entire series.

But because Chiarelli decided this was the year in which the team was best positioned to win a Stanley Cup, next year's version of the team is going to suffer. All the bonuses in Iginla's contract, and a few of the guys on entry-level deals (Torey Krug, Dougie Hamilton) pushed the Bruins over the cap ceiling by Capgeek's reckoning and as such, the overage will be deducted from the Bruins' own limit next season.

So right now, it appears the Bruins' actual payroll against the cap was just north of $67 million, about $2.7 million over the actual limit. As such, if the salary cap is $70 million next year, the Bruins could only spend $67.3 million against it as a penalty for going over this season. The Chicago Blackhawks famously had to do this when they won their first Cup in recent memory, and that's what necessitated the trades of Brian Campbell, Andrew Ladd and Dustin Byfuglien, among others.