Here’s an honest question: How many NHL players, talent evaluators and coaches haven’t watched a single Boston Bruins game this season?
Because there must be at least 10 of them after an ESPN.com poll of the NHL’s best 10 defensemen in the league right now was compiled with Bruins D-man Charlie McAvoy not getting honorable mention consideration. That’s pretty hard to believe considering McAvoy has been the Bruins MVP for the first half of the season while posting three goals and 20 points in 31 games while averaging over 24 minutes of ice time as the on-ice leader of the defensemen corps.
McAvoy has been physical, has locked up nightly with the other team’s best players and has been, by far, the best offense producer on the B’s back end this season, and should be in the running for Norris Trophy consideration.
At times as injuries have decimated the Boston Bruins on the back end, it’s been the 23-year-old McAvoy that’s held things together as the constant playing yeoman minutes.
Instead, though, guys like Jaccob Slavin (1 goal, 10 points) were ahead of McAvoy in the top-10 rankings and guys like Brent Burns and Quinn Hughes ultimately garnered more consideration in what sounded like a Western Conference heavy set of voters. It seemed that the same voters got it right with the top-10 forward group, but they may have missed the mark quite with their defensemen rankings.
We’ll see how it all shakes out at the end of the year with the NHL Awards consideration.
Now on to the rest of the BHN puck links:
*Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere has been placed on waivers in a pretty stunning move by the Broad Street Bullies. He’s a guy that was playing 20 minutes a night this season for the Flyers and still provides a lot of offense and puck-moving for Philly. I can’t see him getting past waivers, but who knows given the current salary cap climate? (Philly Hockey Now)
*This Erik Karlsson reaction to a mostly harmless question about a good offensive night is pretty hilarious.
Not sure if this is out there yet but Erik Karlsson’s answer to whether last night was his best-ever offensive game was great. The apple puts it over the top pic.twitter.com/NSaBK2aNsV
— Jeff Veillette (@JeffVeillette) March 30, 2021
*Brandon Carlo says that he holds “no ill will” toward Washington’s Tom Wilson for the nasty head shot that knocked him out for almost four weeks. But he does have some words of advice for avoiding those kinds of hits in the future. (Boston Hockey Now)
*It’s been fascinating to watch FOH (Friend of Haggs) Mike Harrington chronicling the descent of the Buffalo Sabres as they drop into oblivion. Blowing a 3-0 third period lead is just the latest rock bottom in a season full of them. (Buffalo News)
*Speaking of Jack Eichel, Down Goes Brown asks, among other things, if Jack Eichel is overrated in their latest mailbag. (The Athletic)
*Patrick Williams has the lowdown on Cole Caufield joining the AHL Laval Rocket this week. (Elite Prospects)
*For something completely different: The idea that there may be a sequel to “The Last Starfighter” all these years later sounds awesome to me. (Nerdist)