Boston Bruins

”I can’t accept $2 million anymore” Coach Jim Montgomery has signed out today with Bruins

”I can’t accept $2 million anymore” Coach Jim Montgomery has signed out today with Bruins


It’s up to Bruins management to make a strong move to improve roster before NHL trade deadline​


Too frequently this season, the Bruins have been bullied by other teams despite their high NHL status.© Globe Staff/John Tlumacki



For the Bruins, an intriguing season has taken a weird turn in recent days. That is not ideal. Not in this season, anyhow.
After two meaningless, careless losses to the Flames and Capitals, curiosity naturally leads to questions, and in his first statement after Saturday’s humiliating 3-0 loss to Washington at TD Garden, a disgruntled Jim Montgomery freely acknowledged that he had none.



After his team was blanked for the first time in the previous 100 games, the coach reflected, “It’s not acceptable, and we’re not going to accept it.”

Let’s see how it goes, starting with our Brighton exercise on Monday.



For reasons made incessantly here for nearly 20 years now, the straitjacket that is the salary-cap system (founded 2005) makes it difficult for NHL teams to change their roster, clubs often not able even to promote a minor leaguer whose presence might clear the kind of brain fog that now permeates the Black-and-Gold varsity lineup.


Though quite successful most of this season, and still sitting No. 2 in league standings, the Bruins from the start have been short on gritty, physical play. That’s OK most nights in the endless 82-game season. It’s almost never OK in the playoffs.


It’s particularly painful for a club in a game such as Saturday’s when the Bruins couldn’t summon a check, a hit, anything to drag them emotionally into the fray. There is no tug of war when one team won’t wrap hands around the rope.


Montgomery, the man without answers Saturday, once again noted the lack of physicality in his club’s composition. The Capitals, eager to get into the playoff hunt, arrived on Causeway Street with requisite moxie. The Bruins arrived with no fizz whatsoever.



It took the locals nearly 12 minutes to produce their first shot on net, and they finished with a season-low 18. At that rate, a shot every three-plus minutes, a fan in the crowd with good legs could have dashed to the restroom, hit the concession stands, and returned to the seats without missing anything. That might be a great way to boost Delaware North’s food-and-beverage revenue, but it’s no way to gain points in the standings.


“They were physical, they were right on top of us,” offered Montgomery. “When we’ve struggled this year against teams, teams have tended to be physical, play a hard man-on-man everywhere. Winnipeg did it to us. Minnesota did it to us. You know, Calgary did it to us.”


Milan Lucic was added over the summer, part of GM Don Sweeney’s $1 million-per-player supermarket sweep in free agency. Looch was brought on to be that emotional trigger guy, possibly with a side of brute force, if situations merited.


Lucic remains out of service and is due in court Friday, a day that could bring him another step closer to a jury trial, stemming from an alleged altercation Nov. 18 with wife, Brittany. There’s still time, if cleared of all his legal entanglements and whatever else led him to enter the NHL Players’ Assistance Program, for Lucic to make it back to roster. As of today, it’s highly unlikely and not something Sweeney and team president Cam Neely can count on as the March 8 trade deadline approaches.





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