Could the Boston Bruins acquire Vladimir Tarasenko?
Before we get into that and today’s Boston Hockey Now Puck Links, congratulations to the Tampa Bay Lightning on winning a second-straight Stanley Cup championship with a 1-0 win over the Montreal Canadiens Wednesday night in Tampa Bay.
There’s nothing wrong with fans of other NHL teams being frustrated over the fact that the Lightning ‘Belichicked’ the NHL salary cap, but the bottom line is that they didn’t break any rules. Lightning GM Julien BriseBois and his capologists deserve a ton of praise for doing what 30 other GMs weren’t creative and smart enough to do. As a result, the Lightning is now a dynasty and if the other GMs don’t want that to change, then they need to vote for changes to the salary cap.
I don’t often agree with Greg Wyshynski of ESPN.com but he really nailed it here in his latest column:
“Spare me the whining. Everyone played under the same rules. Everyone played in the abbreviated season, just like every playoff team played in the same bubble when the Lightning won last summer. Tampa Bay just played better than everyone else, on the ice and off the ice.
They’re the most impressive champion of the NHL’s salary-cap era for their superior management and player development; their audacious team construction; and for taking advantage of every single benefit they had under the league’s suffocating financial system, from the lack of state income taxes in Florida to long-term injured reserve.
You’re not outraged that they “cheated.” You’re outraged that your team wasn’t smart enough to work the system, or deep enough to make the playoffs with a former MVP sidelined for 56 games. That they’re not good enough to win a Stanley Cup, let alone two in a row.”
Now onto the rest of your Boston Hockey Now Puck Links!
Could the Boston Bruins have a second line of Taylor Hall-David Krejci-Vladimir Tarasenko next season? As my partner-in-crime, Joe Haggerty pointed out, it’s not as far-fetched as one may think. (BHN)
In a sign that things are getting back to normal in the hockey world, the Boston Bruins became the first team to announce that they will once again hold their Development Camp. (BHN)
Is it time for the Boston Bruins to start drafting more Canadians? If their last Stanley Cup-winning team is any indication, yes!
This Canadian-led roster hoisted the #StanleyCup!
Which team did they play for? 🤔
(Via IG/nhleurope) pic.twitter.com/3FaoNaaebm
— NHL (@NHL) July 6, 2021
Speaking of that 2011 Cup team, the Boston Bruins have been doing a great job celebrating the tenth anniversary of that team. (Behind The B)
Stanley Cup Final
Not sure what’s happened to our culture when we celebrate and praise immaturity and lack of class but that’s exactly what too many are doing over Tampa Bay Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov’s postgame presser Wednesday night. His shot at a Montreal Canadiens fan base that has more passion than any in the NHL, because they were overjoyed to experience a playoff run after a year of COVID restrictions was classless.
My Dad always told me: “Act like you’ve been there before!” and the fact that Kucherov has but still acted like that is proof he needs to grow up!
"The fans in Montreal acted like they won the Stanley Cup last game. Are you kidding me? Are you kidding me? Their final was last round."
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) July 8, 2021
Here’s your gamer from the Cup-clincher. (NHL)
As mentioned above, this Tampa Bay Lightning team is one of the best ever. (TSN)
Not only do the Lightning deserve credit for their play and cap management, but also for their resilience to do all of this amidst a pandemic. (Sportsnet)
The Montreal Canadiens went on a surprising playoff run that gave a new generation of Canadiens players and fans hope that the Habs glory days will return soon. (Sportsnet)
Here’s more on a rejuvenated and grateful city of Montreal that really needed this distraction. (Montreal Gazette)
Even in defeat, Carey Price and Shea Weber, unlike Kucherov, were all class. What Weber said when Price tried to take the blame for the series loss was the mark of a true captain and leader.
Here’s a great look back at the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs:
National Hockey Now
Data scientist and hockey statistician Patrick Bacon is not a fan of the consensus top picks in the NHL Draft. Bacon explained why William Eklund is likely the real steal of the draft. (San Jose Hockey Now)
There is one thing Montreal and Tampa Bay had and the Pittsburgh Penguins can learn from. Actually, all of the hockey world should heed the lesson. (Pittsburgh Hockey Now)
So–whatever happens next, if Vegas puts Marc-Andre Fleury or Robin Lehner on the NHL Trade block, it won’t change that Vegas is the place where Fleury became a Hall of Famer. (Vegas Hockey Now)
Sifting through rosters and stats sheets has begun in Adrian Dater’s office. It will be a good player–Who will the Colorado Avalanche expose to Seattle, and who will they lose? (Colorado Hockey Now)
Are the New York Islanders prime targets for an offer sheet? (OTR)
As I’ve indicated already, the Seattle Kraken are looking to make a splash on the NHL trade market, but will other GMs allow Ron Francis to fleece them just as then-Vegas Golden Knights GM George McPhee did in 2017? (TSN)