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Bruins Must Make Decision On Poitras After Tonight



Boston Bruins

Decision time on rookie center Matt Poitras has finally come for the Boston Bruins.

Once a rookie NHL player from the Canadian Hockey League plays ten games, he burns the first year of his entry-level contract and cannot be returned to his junior team. The 19-year-old Poitras, who is still technically a member of the Guelph Storm (OHL), will play his ninth NHL game against the Florida Panthers on Monday night. Prior to their next game on Thursday (vs the Toronto Maple Leafs), the Boston Bruins will have to decide on whether Poitras will officially burn the first year of his three-year, $2.6 million contract or return him to the Storm.

Matt Poitras has been a pleasant surprise for a Boston Bruins team searching for center depth after losing longtime Bruins centers Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci to retirement this past offseason. After making the team out of training camp, the 2022 second round (54th overall) draft pick has continued to impress with three goals and two assists. His three goals had him tied for first in rookie goal-scoring on Monday, with 2023 top pick overall and Chicago Blackhawks center Connor Bedard and Minnesota Wild rookie forward Marco Rossi.

If the decision on Poitras was solely on Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery, it would already be made, and Poitras would officially be in the first year of his contract.

“We haven’t made a decision,” Montgomery said following his team’s 4-1 win over the Detroit Red Wings. “We’re going to wait until the ninth game. He’s playing great. It’s not my decision. We’ve got to confer on it. I haven’t seen the stamp yet.”

Montgomery not only loves the pure hockey skill that Poitras displays every game but also his will and resilience.

“I really like the way he responds every time he gets tested,” Montgomery said Saturday night. “There was a shift where his line was out there a long time. He was bent over. You could tell he was exhausted. Then, somehow, he finds the juice to create the turnover and get the puck out of the zone. We see the skill, and we see the smarts, but his will is very underrated. We’ve got a hockey player on our hands here.”



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