Morning Free Association: Under the Radar

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Ty Anderson’s latest article on the Bruins coincides with a side point that we made on Bearly on Topic this week- the Bruins quietly succeeding without pressure while flying under the radar. In a city that takes its sports seriously, the bear cubs and their elders have been getting far less attention than the other three, including their roommates, the surging Celtics. And as we pointed out, this is a good thing.

And it’s fun. It’s so much more fun to watch this team succeed and fail than it has been in years.

The Bruins are not just doing this on the back of their normal suspects — Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, David Pastrnak, David Krejci, Zdeno Chara, and Tuukka Rask — either. You’re seeing the young guns — be it a Heinen, Jake DeBrusk, Anders Bjork, Charlie McAvoy, and even ‘lower-level’ prospects like Matt Grzelcyk — grow into their NHL skates before your very eyes, and with results to make ‘em stick.

These are not simply ‘flash in the pan’ performances from prospects of yesteryear, either. McAvoy is a top-pairing defenseman at 19 years old and should be considered a Calder Trophy favorite now and Norris contender in two years, DeBrusk is a coach’s dream given his response to tough love benchings, the industrial Heinen has the smarts of a five-year pro, and Bjork is an ice-burner surely built for today’s rapidfire NHL. Their progressions have been enough for the Bruins to waive Matt Beleskey, and give legitimate pause as to where Adam McQuaid fits into the lineup upon his return.

But beyond the numbers and names confirming your suspicion that this team is worth watching, this is also probably the most fun anybody watching the B’s has had since 2014, when they won the Presidents’ Trophy as the league’s best regular-season team.

Hey, I hope that the Pats make it to (and win) the Super Bowl and the Celtics the NBA Finals if it means this team has the breathing room to grow and improve.

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Satan 81's Sister
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Satan 81's Sister

Something called Colby Cave is at the Garden:

The London Bear
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The London Bear

When I tell people i’m Star-lord

Actually I do know him – from the videogame!

Satan 81's Sister
Editor
Satan 81's Sister

I wonder if my boss is actually planning on coming to the office today or if it’s just me and the dog.

The London Bear
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The London Bear

Ooh, the Celtics are playing in the NBA London game next year. I find basketball a bit of an insomnia cure tbh, but might have a look how much the tix are …

Satan 81's Sister
Editor
Satan 81's Sister

And the Celtics are really good these days!

Long-Winded Striped Mofo
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Long-Winded Striped Mofo

Still fighting with optimum about NESN and it’s price. Make me a deal or I’ll take my cash and watch at the bar!!!!

The London Bear
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The London Bear

$50 a month sounds rather steep to me.

The London Bear
Member
The London Bear

Is it tonight the game a bunch of you are going to? If so, I wish you a top night with plenty of goal celebrations!

Satan 81's Sister
Editor
Satan 81's Sister

This is a pretty awesome read bu David Perron/The Player’s Tribune:

Vegas? VEGAS!

IntentionallyWidenberg
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IntentionallyWidenberg

Vegas!

Satan 81's Sister
Editor
Satan 81's Sister

Been quite at the office this morning (Which I can’t tell you how much I’ve been enjoying it. First quiet morning this month.) so I’ve been playing ball with the boss’s dog.

phonymahoney
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phonymahoney

Morning, pals!

  • Still not done shopping. Awful!
  • Got to work, left to make a beer run, and now I’m back. Beer is in the car because my boss parked next to me, and while he is all about a beer run, some of the beer was his Christmas gift, so it’s still in the Chevy.
  • I have no idea what the plan is for tomorrow – it’s our holiday lunch (read: Jewish Christmas), so I may be working until 2, or until 5. I NEED ANSWERS, CAULIFLOWER
  • Deposit for hockey has been made. Nervous and excited.
  • The London Bear
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    The London Bear

    Melissa knows the score!

    Good luck with the hockey playing

    Long-Winded Striped Mofo
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    Long-Winded Striped Mofo

    Festivus!!!

    MadScientist72
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    MadScientist72

    Kwanzyulechristmukkah!!!!!

    The London Bear
    Member
    The London Bear

    Hello,

    I was thinking about seventh player (because I like to muse on totally inconsequential things). It’s an award to someone who performs better than expected, right? So they should give it to All The Rookies! If #MeToo can be Time person of the year, then why not?

    Feeling a bit delicate today after our department Xmas party last night. It was a good evening though, ending up in a packed karaoke bar.

    Satan 81's Sister
    Editor
    Satan 81's Sister

    I was thinking about seventh player (because I like to muse on totally inconsequential things). It’s an award to someone who performs better than expected, right? So they should give it to All The Rookies!

    Great minds think alike! wink

    The kids are alright. Give ’em all the 7th player award!

    The London Bear
    Member
    The London Bear

    I did read your post just after I finished mine and thought “well, I could’ve just copy and pasted this!”

    phonymahoney
    Editor
    phonymahoney

    I want a Seventh Player for all of them, HOWEVER, I really think Riley Nash deserves it. He’s been the only durable center so far, and he has played ALL OVER the lineup.

    IntentionallyWidenberg
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    IntentionallyWidenberg

    Khudobin would be my vote. He’s gone well above expectations.

    The London Bear
    Member
    The London Bear

    Very good point!

    Satan 81's Sister
    Editor
    Satan 81's Sister

    So many possibilities for 7th player. Pretty good problem to have.

    phonymahoney
    Editor
    phonymahoney

    Also a good choice!

    The London Bear
    Member
    The London Bear

    Nash has done a great job, certainly but I’d argue Spooner plays a similar role slightly better.

    Having said that, a couple of years ago I did vote Spooner for 7P after he’d filled in for Krejci at 2C for a while, but he then did absolutely nothing for the rest of the season!

    Satan 81's Sister
    Editor
    Satan 81's Sister

    Morning all. It seems like every game the names DeBrusk, Heinen, and McAvoy come up as key contributors and I absolutely love it. Was checking rookie stats yesterday and Heinen is currently 8th in points and 7th is assists. McAvoy is 8th in assists. The kids are alright. Give ’em all the 7th player award!