Boston, the Bruins have a special teams problem. In some ways, it’s probably indicative of the overall inconsistency that the Bruins have exhibited the past few weeks after a long stretch of dominance, but in others, both the power play and penalty kill have really hit the skids recently. After being top 10 for most of the season in both categories, the Bruins have dropped to 18th in the NHL on the power play (19.6 percent success rate) and 13th on the penalty kill (82.3 percent success rate) to this point in the season. The Bruins are a woeful 2-for-34 on the PP in the past 11 games and have gone six consecutive games without a power-play goal headed into their Thursday night showdown with the Penguins. Some of the present struggles can clearly be attributable to the turnover in personnel with Ryan Spooner traded and Patrice Bergeron out for at least the next few weeks. “Bergy [Patrice Bergeron] is out, Spoons [Ryan Spooner] got traded, so two guys that were on that first unit [are out]. So, we’re going to have to mix and match here." said defenseman Charlie McAvoy. "Not that it was going great before that, but it’s something that we’re going to have to find a way because practice time is limited. All those things are limited, so maybe watch more film and get on the same page chemistry-wise with our units. My unit especially, I want to make better plays. I don’t feel like I’m making the best plays that I could. “We want to have success, we’re gripping the stick and it’s frustrating but we know that when we’re playing simple and we’re making plays, strong, high-percentage plays, that we score goals. We have seen it all year long, so we got to get back to simple plays on our power play and we’ll have success. It’s a work in progress but we’ll be fine.” But it goes deeper than that on the power play. Zone entries have been a mess, the Bruins aren’t winning enough battles to sustain possession in the attack zone and the grit factor just isn’t there in front of the net. All of those things need to change if the power play is going to live up to its name and potentially help the Bruins produce a little more offense with one of their big guns missing in Bergeron.
Bruins need to start finding some answers on special teams
NBC Sports Boston | Mar 1