The extended run of dominance simply continues for the Boston Bruins with points in 16 straight games, a stretch of consistent brilliance that has them just three points behind the Tampa Bay Lightning for top spot in the Atlantic Division.
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It's the longest point streak for the Black and Gold since the high-powered bunch that captured the President's Trophy in 2013-14 at the very tail end of that core group's playoff run.
The Bruins rank fifth in the NHL in goals scored (3.3 goals per game), second in goals against (2.4 goals allowed per game), eighth in power play (21.1 percent success rate) and fifth on the PK while killing 83.6 percent of the power plays they face. During their 16-game point streak, they’ve outscored opponents by a whopping 64-29 margin while averaging four goals per game and completely embarrassing a handful of teams along the way.
Certainly the argument can be made that they don’t have many signature wins against playoff teams during the past 16-game stretch, and have lost to the good teams like Pittsburgh, Dallas and Washington during that span. They also may be in danger of falling off their pace in the second half when the schedule really gets heavy for a team chock full of young players, but those things will play out for themselves after the NHL All-Star break.
For now the Bruins are a hockey team that’s rolling, and playing to their identity as a fast, deep hockey club that’s overwhelming others with what they bring to the table while rolling four lines.
“I think we’re playing to our identity in terms of being hard to play against, and not giving up many easy chances,” said Cassidy. “When we do break down our goaltending has been excellent, and I mean both of them in [Anton] Khudobin and [Tuukka] Rask. I think we’re getting contributions from everybody. Our top line has been really hot lately, obviously, but we’ve had [Riley] Nash’s line scoring, our fourth line has scored and the [David] Krejci group has done a good job. Now our ‘D’ is involved a little bit more as well.
“I think our pace is good and we really try to deny entries into our own zone. So we’re playing the style of game that we want.”
It’s been particularly impressive in recent games where the Bruins have given up the game’s first goal, and weren’t necessarily able to play the front-runner role that’s been so good for them over the last couple of months.
It’s also been the same story since mid-November for the Bruins, so it can’t be considered simply a hot streak or a team that’s playing over their collective heads. The Black and Gold are simply dictating terms to every team that they play, climbing up the standings, dashing the dreams of teams like Montreal teetering on the edge of irrelevance and piling up points for the extended “rainy day” that may hit them in the next couple of months.