Lingering Bruins presser thoughts…

So I’ve been digesting for a few days the press conference the Boston Bruins management held on Wednesday.  Jeremy Jacobs, Charlie Jacobs and Cam Neely took some questions from the assorted mish mash of reporters…you know, the local guys that always ask real pointed questions…NOT!

Anyway, truth be told, there was not a whole lot that was new from any of these head honchos.  In fact, I’m not sure why Jeremy Jacobs was even there.  Not many questions were directed at him.  And when there was something for him to respond on, he of course did not say much at all.  But I suppose it looked good to have his presence there in the center of the table.  Whatever…

Found Charlie Jacobs to be fairly useless as well.  But I guess he had to be there too.

So what did Cam have to say?  He did most of the talking and gave at least me a few points to think about:

*Right off the bat, Cam came out and said that not quite a year ago GM Don Sweeney presented a plan in which he thought would get them back to being Cup contenders and it included cap flexibility, stockpiling prospects and putting a playoff team on the ice.

Sssssoooo…I think this is the first time we’ve seen anything regarding a rock solid “plan”, no?  I mean, of course common sense would indicate that Sweeney and the organization would have some sort of formal plan.  Plus, you would think any GM candidate coming in to interview would have to present something to management in order to be strongly considered for the job.

In any event, it was kind of good to hear that…I guess?  You know what would have been better?  Some details maybe?  Especially since, you know, the “playoff team on the ice” didn’t happen.  I know Cam wasn’t going to divulge exactly what the B’s are going to do moving forward.  And I wouldn’t expect him to.  But it would have been nice if one of the reporters at least asked the question.  And maybe Cam gives us something more?

*Cam said he believes that this year’s group is a closer group than last year’s…and this year the players showed more passion.  Phew…that’s a relief!  Still ummmm…no playoffs though.

*Charlie said that the team “had some listless moments last season and some of it came back this year.”  And “the youth that Donny was able to inject into our roster infused enthusiasm and it was refreshing.”  Charlie was disappointed, but said this was a change…and a change for the better.  Yeah, there is that “infusing youth” thing again.  Still wonder who they mean.

*When they woke Jeremy Jacobs up and asked him a question whether it was hard and even at all possible to “serve two masters” (making the playoffs and trying to win while also rebuilding)…kind of what it appears the Detroit Red Wings are trying to do these days…Jeremy responded with some gibberish and “I admire evolution versus revolution”…and never actually answered the question.  Thanks for that one bud.

*Later in the presser though, both Jeremy and Charlie said they were willing to take a step back to integrate young players and not make the playoffs.  Charlie did think they could do both though.  Jeremy agreed.  But this is where he said his one interesting thing for the day.  “I thought we took a step back this past year for this process…thought we went with guys we had for a period of time and didn’t invest…you pay a price in this game if not investing in next generation…”  Hmmmmm.  It appears that JJ thought they should play the younger guys more perhaps?

*Cam:  “Claude did a great job coaching…tried to integrate young players and did a great job with the roster…”  No comment.

*Cam:  “Donnie worked extremely hard to move up in last year draft and tried throughout the year to get something done.  HE LAID SOME GROUNDWORK leading up to deadline and hopes he can get something done in offseason.  Defense would probably be at top of list as far as biggest priority goes.”  Ok, the defense being the priority is kind of obvious.  What kills me here is the “laying some groundwork part.”  Ugh.  Reminds me too much of Ben Cherington I guess.  But everyone always says it.  I just don’t like hearing it.  Instead of laying groundwork…GET SOMETHING DONE!!

*Neely said that he felt they had a productive offseason last year, “even with the curveball in there”.  What curveball was he talking about?  Dougie Hamilton not wanting to play in Boston and then Donnie Hockey dealing him for about 40 cents on the dollar?  Wish one of the reporters would have drilled down on that one.  And until any of these “prospects” show up in Boston and prove they are actually useful, I may argue the “productive” part as well.

*Cam said that he “had recently learned” that Claude Julien “has not lost the room.”  Maybe that is true.  But you just recently learned this Cam?  Kind of surprising I would say anyway.

*Lastly, this was my biggest takeaway.  When speaking about untouchable players in his press conference last week, Sweeney had said that Patrice Bergeron was and paused when asked about Tuukka Rask.  Neely was asked the same question, with the reporter referencing the Sweeney comments.  Cam then waxed poetic on Bergy, “Bergy is special, we all enjoy watching him play…”  Etc.  When he was done praising Bergeron, he said that if there were opportunities to improve the club, they’d have to look at them.  Not a word about Rask.

Sounds to me that Bergy isn’t going anywhere and they’d listen on Tuuks.  That’s how I took it anyway.  I’d listen on just about anyone, yes, even Bergy.  What if he can get you a haul?  But that’s me.

So there is a lot of work to be done regardless.  I think they all know that, but I was hoping to see a little more fire and/or anger in these pressers than I did.  Lot of obvious answers.  Not a lot of specifics.  And all that.  I guess at least they supposedly have a plan…


About mpdenton

I am a passionate and life long fan of the local teams...and by local I mean New England. I remember the days of Ray Bourque, Larry Bird, Steve Grogan and Wade Boggs...meaning I have lived the highs and lows of the Boston sports scene. With all this pent up Boston sports emotion, I clearly have a lot to say about the local teams and sometimes about sports in general. Maybe even the Revolution... I appreciate you reading my blog and hope you enjoy my rants.

Posted on April 22, 2016, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. There is clearly some tension in that room. All you have to do is also listen to Cam’s interview of Felger and Mazz on 98.5 The Sports Hub. The tension in Neely’s voice was palpable. Whether or not Cam is good with regards to player talent evaluation is under the most scrutiny. Picking Subban in the first round a few season ago? The players accepted in both the Seguin and Dougy trades. The free agent “haul” from last season. Based on what Cam was saying on the radio, the buck stops with him.

    Here is what frustrates me – when I hear players saying they “don’t want to play here” is that because we have coach that doesn’t allow his players to play to their strengths? Or is it something else? I think Dougy got frustrated here because he watched as the young kids, like himself, get punished and scrutinized by Claude, but veterans who are absolute bums keep getting rolled out there.

    I fear that we might see more of the same next season. I know they get cap relief with the likes of Chris “twenty goals” Kelly coming off the books etc, but I don’t have faith that Cam and Donnie Hockey are good enough at picking talent.

    • Haven’t heard the interview, but Cam, and more importantly, Jeremy Jacobs, said during the press conference that the buck indeed stops with Cam. That still doesn’t convince me that Cam made all those moves in previous years. I bet Peter Chiarelli and Donnie Sweeney had some latitude. Sure, Cam ended up signing off on all of them. But I wonder if that was it, and he was giving those guys some rope on the evaluations and all. Thinking that their views and the scouts opinions and all of that would cover everything. And now that it is public that his arse is kind of on the line, maybe Cam takes a larger role in these matters. Who knows? Would not be surprised at all that young players want out because of Claude’s system and reputation with the young guys. And elite offensive players, specifically the younger guys, most assuredly don’t want to come here and get told to back check. I’d bet good money that Chris Kelly is back here next year, albeit on a smaller contract…but probably still more than he should be making, or that any other team would pay him. Claude trusts him, and that is all that will matter, unfortunately…

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