Just over halfway through the NHL season, the Boston Bruins have produced an historical run unlike any other.
With a goalie tandem of Linus Ullmark (he/him) and Jeremy Swayman (he/him), the Bruins have far and away the best goalie statistics in the entire league. Ullmark, in particular, has become the fastest goalie to 25 wins in any given season in NHL history, doing so in his first 28 starts. Star goal scorer David Pastrnak (he/him) has accrued the second most goals in the entire NHL, only trailing behind the MVP frontrunner Connor McDavid (he/him)
The Bruins have not been completely infallible, though. Their 22 home-game point streak finally came to a close on January 14, with a 3-0 loss to the Seattle Kraken; coincidentally also their first shutout loss of the season. Just before the All Star Break they lost consecutive games for the first time all season, following up a January 26 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning with a 3-2 final score and a heartbreaking 4-3 overtime loss to the Florida Panthers on January 28. Additionally, the injury list has been mounting at the midpoint. Breakout forward Jake DeBrusk (he/him) is out with a fractured fibula after scoring two goals against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Fenway Park in the annual Winter Classic, and has not played since. Defensive forward Tomas Nosek (he/him) is additionally out for a month with a broken foot.
This recent spell has allowed the Bruins to experiment with the lineup, particularly with calling up young talent from the minor league Providence Bruins. While an experiment with calling up veteran Chris Wagner (he/him) was lackluster, this season has been the first time forward Joona Koppanen (he/him) has seen NHL ice time. While being a capable defensive forward, he didn’t score his first point until a tilt against the Sharks, in which he logged an assist on linemate Nick Foligno’s (he/him) goal in the 4-0 victory. However, he would be benched for fellow Providence call-up and Billerica native, Marc McLaughlin (he/him) after the loss against the Panthers.
The Bruins have dropped three straight prior to the All Star Break, but bounced back last night in a matchup against the rival Toronto Maple Leafs, and sit atop the NHL at a 39-7-5 record.