ESPN Names Bruins’ New Year’s Resolution In Latest NHL Power Rankings

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The Boston Bruins should resist the urge to go for broke at the NHL trade deadline.

That’s what ESPN’s hockey editorial staff recommended Thursday when it assigned the Bruins a New Year’s resolution for 2020: “stick to your budget.” After slotting the Bruins at No. 3 in its latest NHL power rankings, ESPN explained why Boston would be wise not to risk its future salary flexibility for the sake of adding a big name before the Feb. 24 NHL trade deadline.

“The Bruins have been banged up all season, dealing with various injuries to key players,” ESPN wrote. “That makes it tempting to pony up on a big trade-deadline acquisition to supplement this group. But when healthy, the Bruins are one of the most dangerous Stanley Cup contenders. They should exercise patience and keep the checkbook away. Save it for when you need to extend Torey Krug.”

Krug’s contract will expire after this season, and he’s expected to earn a big payday in free agency.

Although the Bruins fell one spot in ESPN’s pecking order, they remained No. 3 in NHL.com’s power rankings for the second consecutive week. As usual, Dan Rosen stresses one good and one bad thing about the Bruins’ last seven days.

Hit: The Bruins have points in eight straight games (4-0-4), including at least one power-play goal in each game (10-for-34).

Miss: They have been playing without defensemen Charlie McAvoy (lower body), Torey Krug (upper body) and Connor Clifton (upper body), and forward David Krejci (lower body). Krug and McAvoy are on injured reserve.

The Bruins will host the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday at TD Garden, welcome the Edmonton Oilers to their arena on Saturday and visit the Nashville Predators on Tuesday. Those three games will give Boston the opportunity to improve its respective places in the NHL standings and NHL power rankings.

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