It remains to be seen what needs the Bruins are going to fill at the NHL trade deadline, but the performance of some of their young players has at least given them some options. Relying on 23-year-old Peter Cehlarik to be the top-6 answer to the second line’s offensive problems certainly feels like a tall order, but perhaps he is exactly the right kind of fit if David Pastrnak is added to the right wing for a versatile line with a European flavor.
Cehlarik scored the game-winner earlier this week in the victory over the Islanders, and now has three goals, four points and a plus-5 rating in eight games since being promoted from Providence.
“I’ve been watching the games we played, as well. Sometimes we want the puck…we really want the puck, everyone really wants the puck and we’re kind of too tight,” said Cehlarik. “We want to give each other more space to work in the corners and stuff. I think we did just that tonight and I think we did pretty good [against the Islanders].”
Even better still Cehlarik has played up to his 6-foot-2, 202-pound frame while showing size, strength and power winning battles around the front of the net and along the boards. That as much as anything else fills a need for the Black and Gold provided Cehlarik can also continue to finish off plays when Krejci and Pastrnak set him up.
The goal vs. the Islanders was an encouraging one as he crashed the net, fanned on the first shot attempt and then showed the poise to reload and fire on a second chance that bounced off goalie Robin Lehner and then into the net.
It’s a small sample size for a young player that’s going to have consistency issues, but Cehlarik’s play has been encouraging, and it seems to start with playing on his strong side at left wing.