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Posted by Charles P. Pierce  February 5, 2010 07:00 AM

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Ninety-two shots?

In the past two games, the Bruins have thrown 92 shots at a pair of goalies. Three of them have managed to find their way past those goalies. The Bruins have lost both games.

Ninety-two shots?

This isn't bad luck. Or hot goaltending. Or Jupiter aligning with Glenn Hall. This is not having enough players who can shoot the puck into the ocean if they tee it up on the beach. This isn't failure to execute the coach's otherwise masterful game plan. (Sorry, Claude.) This is not having enough players on your roster full of expensively extended players who can fully execute the act of putting the puck in the net. Against Montreal last night, Jaroslav Halak, that Quebecois immortal, stopped three of the most expensive of those players during a shootout, when there were no other players on the ice at all. If this team were a firing squad, nobody would die.

There really isn't any obvious solution. Ilya Kovalchuk will drag his costly post-Communist hindquarters to play in New Jersey. This is the team that's going to play out the season here and, right now, this is a team that cannot score goals. At all. There's no drill you can do in order to remember how to do something you've been doing with ease your whole hockey life. The sheer number of shots is proof that something in the offensive game plan is working. This is about a group of people who have collectively lost the ability to do something they'd been doing without thinking about it since Peewees. Finish plays. It is a collective collapse of a number of distinct individuals, each of whom has to find his own solution.

Ninety-two shots should be something more than someone's birthday party at Sullivan's Tap. 
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