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Talking Points: Boston Bruins Lose Embarrassingly to Carolina…Again

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BOSTON – Here are the Talking Points from the Boston Bruins 6-0 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes at TD Garden on Thursday night.

GOLD STAR: Who else but Boston Bruins killer Sebastian Aho? Aho now has 10 goals and 16 points in 13 career regular season games against the Black and Gold and continues to do damage in all kinds of ways against Boston. Aho finished with four shots on net, six shot attempts overall, two hits, one takeaway and 8-of-14 faceoff wins in 16:05 of ice time to go along with a plus-1 rating. There were other standouts like Andrei Svechnikov with his three-point evening and Jordan Staal with a dominant, 200-foot game. But it was Aho that put two on the board for the Hurricanes and continues to post big numbers against the Black and Gold in his career.

BLACK EYE: On a night when the Boston Bruins are missing Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand, it’s the perfect time for a guy like Charlie Coyle to step up and provide some offense and good two-way play. Instead, Coyle didn’t land a single shot on net in the first two periods when it mattered, had a couple giveaways and really didn’t do anything impactful that could have helped the B’s cause. It’s too much to expect a guy like Coyle to be Bergeron or provide the kind of superstar level of play that Marchand is capable of, but it’s not too much to expect Coyle to actually do something of note with key guys out of action. He didn’t deliver in a big spot, but Coyle was far from the only one with a lot of underwhelming performances among some young veteran leaders in the B’s dressing room.

TURNING POINT: While it didn’t end up being a turning point for the Bruins, it damn well should have been when Charlie McAvoy stepped up and delivered a thunderous hit on Sebastian Aho in the neutral zone during the first period in a game that was 1-0. This was after McAvoy gave Martin Necas the rough treatment around the Boston net as well earlier in the period.

Unfortunately, nobody else stepped up and followed suit behind McAvoy and Tony DeAngelo dropped the gloves with the Boston Bruins defenseman following the big open ice hit on Sebastian Aho. This is truly where the Bruins miss the attitude and spirit of a guy like Brad Marchand, who drags them into the fight with his fiery, competitive passion.

HONORABLE MENTION: Got to say, in all of the ugliness of the loss I didn’t hate Trent Frederic’s game at all. He was a minus-1 and he took a penalty, but he also had six shot attempts and registered six hits in a very physical game for the Black and Gold. Certainly, some of that was the pent-up energy at having been out of the lineup for so long, and some of it is probably the understanding that he’s going to need to play that way all the time if he wants to stay in the lineup. So it’s very clearly a consolation prize while looking at a positive for the Boston Bruins in a 5-0 shutout loss with Boston’s best players on the sidelines, but that’s where are right now.

BY THE NUMBERS: 16-1 – the total amount that the Boston Bruins have been outscored in three ugly, pretty one-sided losses to the Carolina Hurricanes this season.

QUOTE TO NOTE: “If you go into a game thinking we don’t have Bergie, we don’t have March, we’re dead…you can’t have that. If that creeps into your mind, then you’re already dead. It certainly didn’t creep into my mind. We have to believe in each other. I do & I think we all do.” –Boston Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy, who was one of the few players that stepped up and played with some attitude in the blowout loss.

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