The Boston Bruins’ cast of stars have kept them near the NHL’s summit all season.
ESPN.com pegged the Bruins at No. 3 Thursday in the latest installment of its NHL power rankings. This is the third consecutive week the Worldwide Leader has positioned the Bruins third, and it follows a ranking period in which they beat the Winnipeg Jets and New York Islanders but lost to the Philadelphia Flyers and Columbus Blue Jackets.
ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski also identified Jake DeBrusk as the “hidden All-Star” in the Bruins’ midst.
“Overshadowed by the offensive fireworks from the Bruins’ “Perfection Line,” DeBrusk continues yeoman’s work on the team’s second line with 14 goals and 13 assists in 43 games,” Wyshynski wrote. “In the Bruins’ 27 wins, DeBrusk has 21 points.”
DeBrusk’s contributions to Boston’s cause have gained increasing amounts of attention in recent weeks, and he has drawn praise from his Bruins coaches, teammates, fans and the media who cover the team.
While the Bruins remained at No. 3 in ESPN’s NHL power rankings, they slipped from third to fourth in NHL.com’s latest installment of its weekly “Super 16 power rankings.” In explaining Boston’s ranking, NHL.com’s Dan Rosen praises David Pastrnak’s hot streak but also laments Tuukka Rask’s concussion.
Hit: David Pastrnak has eight goals in his past nine games. The forward leads the NHL with 36 goals this season.
Miss: Tuukka Rask sustained a concussion early in a 3-0 loss against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday. The goalie was hit in the head by Columbus forward Emil Bemstrom’s left arm and left the game 1:12 into the first period.
The Bruins will begin the new NHL power-ranking period Thursday night when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins at TD Garden. Boston then will visit the Penguins on Sunday before returning home to battle the Vegas Golden Knights on Tuesday. The NHL All-Star break will follow, with the Bruins having a good chance of ESPN and NHL.com ranking them third … or even higher.
Thumbnail photo via Russell LaBounty/USA TODAY Sports Images