What a Thursday it was for the Boston Bruins
David Pastrnak's $90 Million Contract Extension: Is He Worth It?
It's official: David Pastrnak, the Bruins' top goal scorer, has signed a whopping eight-year contract extension worth $90 million. This deal is the largest in Bruins' history and the 10th-largest in NHL history. While it's great news for the Bruins and their fans, it raises a few questions. Firstly, is Pastrnak worth the money? On the one hand, he's undeniably one of the best players in the NHL. He's led the Bruins in goals in five of the last six seasons and has helped them reach the Stanley Cup Final in 2019. But, on the other hand, he's also only 26 years old, so he's likely to continue playing at a high level for many years.
On the other hand, $90 million is an astronomical amount, and there's always a risk when a team commits that much to one player. Injuries happen, and players can suddenly lose their form, leaving teams stuck with a massive contract and a player who can't live up to it. Secondly, what does this mean for the Bruins' future? Pastrnak's new deal will keep him in Boston through the 2030-31 season, which is a significant commitment. While the Bruins have had much success with Pastrnak on the team, they've also struggled. They missed the playoffs in 2020, were eliminated in the second round in 2021, and only made the Stanley Cup Playoffs as a wild card in 2022. The Carolina Hurricanes eliminated them in a grind of a seven-game series.
But what does this mean for the NHL as a whole? Pastrnak's contract is the sixth-highest among active NHL players, which shows how much money is being spent on the league's top talent. While it's great for the players making that kind of money, it raises questions about the sustainability of the league. If teams spend this much money on one player, how can they pay the rest? And what happens if the league hits hard times, as it did during the pandemic?
Will teams be able to keep up with these massive contracts, or will we see a contraction in the league? Ultimately, only time will tell whether Pastrnak's contract was a good investment for the Bruins. It's undoubtedly a bold move that shows they're committed to winning. Whether they can do it remains to be seen. But one thing's for sure: with Pastrnak on the team, the Bruins will always have a chance.
Bruins' Recent Trades and Record-Breaking Performance Set Them Up for a Deep Playoff Run in 2023
At the same presser as the Pastarnak contract extension, the Bruins also announced they had acquired forward Tyler Bertuzzi from the Detroit Red Wings in exchange for the Bruins' 2024 first-round pick and 2025 fourth-round pick. The Bruins have made some excellent moves over the past week to add the toughness and tenacity needed to make a deep playoff run in 2023. General Manager Don Sweeney has done a fantastic job shoring up the weak spots on his roster and adding the experience and grit that can frustrate opponents and knock them off their game.
In addition, the Bruins have added more truculence to an already physical team with the acquisitions of defenseman Dmitry Orlov and bottom-six forwards Garnet Hathaway and Tyler Bertuzzi. Bertuzzi, in particular, is an excellent addition who can play anywhere in the lineup and has a history of getting under opponents' skin. Between Bertuzzi, Hathaway, Orlov, and others, the Bruins will be a real handful in the playoffs from a physicality standpoint. In addition, the team has plenty of high-end skill, substantial depth, lots of playoff experience, and improved toughness, making them a serious contender for the Stanley Cup. Overall, the Bruins' recent trades have put them in a great position to make a deep playoff run in 2023.
And we have yet to mention the on-ice action on Thursday night. With their latest victory over the Buffalo Sabres, which saw the Bruins win 7-1, they have broken an NHL record for the fastest team to reach 100 points in 61 games. This achievement is a testament to their consistent performance and determination to succeed. The previous record was held by the Montreal Canadiens, who achieved 100 points in 62 games in the 1976-77 and 1977-78 seasons. The Bruins have managed to break this record thanks to their relentless efforts on the ice. They have consistently performed at the top of their game, and their hard work has paid off. The Bruins demonstrated their skill and prowess in their latest game against the Sabres.
Deadline addition Dmitry Orlov shone in this game, scoring the opening goal with a power-play shot and assisting on a goal from freshly-recalled Jakub Lauko. Orlov finished the game with three points and became the first Bruins defenseman to record back-to-back three-point games since Zdeno Chara in March 2011.
The Bruins dominated against the Sabres, with several players getting on the score sheet. Pavel Zacha scored with help from David Pastrnak and David Krejci, while Pastrnak scored an empty-net goal. Patrice Bergeron added a 200-foot empty-net goal, and Connor Clifton scored a shorthanded goal. Jakub Lauko scored the seventh and final goal of the evening, securing a big win for the Bruins.
However, all was not gumdrops and lollipops. Brad Marchand, one of the Bruins' top players, departed the game with a lower-body injury after two periods of play. While reports suggest that the injury is not expected to be significant, injuries are always a concern for any team. Therefore, the Bruins will be hoping for Marchand's speedy recovery.
The Bruins have had an outstanding season and show no signs of slowing down. Their consistency and determination have led to their record-breaking achievement. They will continue to work hard and aim for continued success in the NHL. With talented players like Dmitry Orlov and Brad Marchand on their roster, the Bruins are well-positioned to make a deep run in the playoffs. The NHL better watch out because the Bruins are coming for them!