Talking Points from the Bruins' 5-4 win over the Winnipeg Jets

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Talking Points from the Bruins' 5-4 win over the Winnipeg Jets

GOLD STAR: While David Pastrnak got the hat trick and plenty of attention will be rightfully heaped on him, it’s got to be Jake DeBrusk this time around. He scored the two of the team’s other three goals aside from Pastrnak, and he assisted on Pastrnak’s final score when he tried to jam it short-side on an odd-man rush that No. 88 cleaned up in front.

Perhaps his best play of the night, though, was blocking the clear-in attempt of Luca Sbisa and racing down the other end of the ice to pop it in past Lauren Brossoit for a breakaway score. In all DeBrusk finished with two goals, three points and a plus-3 to go along with four shots on net and a huge four takeaways in a game where he was aggressive, skated hard and made things happen for himself.

This is the kind of game the B’s want to see out of DeBrusk consistently even if it’s not resulting in goals.

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BLACK EYE: Blake Wheeler didn’t do much in his 16th memorial revenge game (I’m making that number up) against the Bruins. He finished without a shot on net even though he did have an assist on one of Winnipeg’s goals, had a couple giveaways and lost 9-of-15 face-offs in a performance that was completely forgettable for a Jets team playing their third game in four nights.

He also tripped up David Krejci that led to a second period Boston power play that the B’s ended up scoring on five seconds into the power play possession. Wheeler has turned himself into a very good player for Winnipeg since leaving Boston, but this was not one of his good nights.

TURNING POINT: The Bruins were looking down after falling behind by a goal in the third period on a bad goal that Mark Schiefele banked off Jaroslav Halak, but that didn’t stop them from roaring back against a fatigued Winnipeg team.

Jake DeBrusk was right in the middle of both goals after charging the net short-side on an odd-man rush that ended up turning into David Pastrnak’s third goal of the night, and then DeBrusk scored one of his own for the game-winning difference. The two goals were scored within 33 seconds of each other and made certain that the B’s once again ended in the winner’s circle for the second game in a row.

HONRABLE MENTION: It’s got to be David Pastrnak, right? He was basically refusing the let the Bruins lose by powering up for a hat trick, and erasing any mistakes that the B’s made against a Winnipeg Jets team that was putting up a fight. It was the 33rd, 34th and 35th goals of the season to again widen the gap between Pastrnak and Auston Matthews for the NHL goal-scoring title and puts him back on pace for 60 plus goals this season.

Pastrnak finished with three goals and a plus-2 rating in 20:34 of ice time, six shot attempts and two hits and looks like he’s again super-heating up after dropping off in December from 12 goals in October and November.

BY THE NUMBERS: 7 – the number of hat tricks for David Pastrnak in the last two seasons to lead the entire NHL over that span by a wide margin.  

QUOTE TO NOTE: “I think the last two games you’re seeing more [scoring] up and down the lineup wheras the few games before that it was a struggle for some guys. But it’s a long year and you hope they’ll come out of it and it looks like, at least in the short term here, we have.” –Bruce Cassidy on the scoring trending back upward in the last couple of games.

Highlights: Pastrnak hat trick leads B's past Jets

Bruce Cassidy, ex-Bruins teammates stunned by news of Colby Cave's coma

Bruce Cassidy, ex-Bruins teammates stunned by news of Colby Cave's coma

Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy first got to know Colby Cave when he was the Providence Bruins coach and Cave arrived in the AHL as a 20-year-old from Saskatchewan in 2015.

So, the news that Cave, now with the Edmonton Oilers, is in a medically induced coma and in critical condition at a Toronto hospital after he had a brain bleed Tuesday and subsequent surgery was particularly jarring to Cassidy and Cave's former B's teammates.

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Cassidy told Joe McDonald of The Athletic that he and Cave's former teammates and coaches are working on get-well video messages for Cave, who had surgery to remove a colloid cyst that was causing pressure on his brain.

Cassidy said his wife, Julie, had spoken to Cave's wife, Emily.

“It’s very difficult for her because she can’t get in the room and give him a hug, or anything,” Cassidy said.

Cave's wife had a heart-wrenching Instagram post on Wednesday:

Cassidy said that despite the coma, he's hopeful that Cave can perhaps hear the messages. “Anything we can do. Every little bit helps and if we can chip in with some encouraging words then that’s what we’re going to do.”

Jay Leach, Cave's coach in Providence after Cassidy replaced Claude Julien in Boston, told the Athletic, “There’s no one better than Colby Cave with regards to being a person and the way he treats other people."

Cave played 23 games for Boston from 2017-19 and was put on the Bruins top line with David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand to fill in for Patrice Bergeron when Bergeron was injured in the 2018-19 season. When Cave was sent back to Providence, he didn't clear waivers and was claimed by the Oilers in January 2019.

Another former Bruin, Noel Acciari of the Florida Panthers, who played with Cave in Boston and Providence,  echoed Cassidy and Leach's sentiments.

"He’s who you want on your team," Acciari said. "It’s a terrible thing what has happened to him, but he’s a fighter and my thoughts and prayers are with him and his loved ones.”

Torey Krug has funny details about what he misses from Bruins' locker room

Torey Krug has funny details about what he misses from Bruins' locker room

Torey Krug is comfortably living in his home state of Michigan with his in-laws, his wife, his daughter and his dog right now amidst the coronavirus outbreak and doing his best to stay in shape while running outdoors and working out indoors.

There was no denying, though, that the Bruins defenseman is still adjusting to the abrupt pause button applied to the NHL regular season with about a month left to play ahead of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

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“As hockey players along with most people, you’re going to feel a little lost in this situation,” admitted Krug. “But first and foremost, we need to park that and put it aside and realize that there is something bigger [going on] here. If we do have the opportunity to get back playing, then let’s be safe and let’s be smart. Whether it’s the health and safety of the players of jumping right back into hockey from a competitive standpoint or continuing to practice the social distancing cues that we’ve been given, nobody wants to jump back into a situation where we put a bunch of people in one area and it takes off again.

“I hope everyone is staying safe. In some way, shape or form I think we are all connected by the coronavirus. Whether it’s somebody you know or a family member, we’re all in this together. It’s a tough situation, but there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. As long as we keep doing what we’re doing, hopefully we’ll see each other sooner rather than later.”

Krug has fully recovered from the upper body injury he suffered right before the season stopped and has settled into a routine every day to keep a sense of normalcy, so those are good things amidst a troubling time. But he also voiced just how much he’s missing all his Bruins teammates while confined to the current limbo everybody is living through until the coronavirus pandemic has subsided.

The picture he painted inside the B’s dressing room was a humorous one, but it also underscored just how much everybody across the country is missing out on their normal day-to-day activities while rightly practicing self-quarantining and social distancing. Krug was quick to say he doesn’t miss getting chirped daily by Brad Marchand, but he does miss many, many other things around the Bruins dressing room after the B’s players scattered.

“It’s just the normal silly stuff that we go back and forth. I’m sure I’ll get chirped for how I look on this video. Anytime something funny comes up we put it in the chat just to keep that bond going,” said Krug, of the group texting that he and his teammates are engaged in right now while spread out from each other. “We do miss the guys and that’s part of the back and forth every day. I just miss the simple conversations.

[I miss] seeing what Pasta is wearing when we walks through the [dressing room] door. [I miss] wondering what kind of mood Chris Wagner is going to be in. Or seeing Chucky [McAvoy] and his big smile walking through the door every day. Trying to make sense of what comes out of Jake DeBrusk’s mouth. There are just so many things that you miss on a daily basis [with the season on pause].

Hopefully for Krug and the rest of the Bruins, the world will soon be in a place where those day-to-day conversations can once again take place in person rather than over video conference technology as it’s been for the last month.