Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Bob Lobel: Still Room on the Bruins Bandwagon

By Bob Lobel

The bandwagon is starting to move at full speed, and it's hard not to be on it after last Monday's miracle.

Now, we have two straight against the Rangers, the emergence of Torey Krug, Dougie Hamilton and Johnny Boychuck, but not everybody can be a hero. With that in mind, I would like to nominate two guys that have been less than heroic for the otherwise bandwagon-worthy B's.

Tyler Seguin and that Jagr guy

I can't offer a complete evaluation of Seguin, but I know that "aggressive" and "courageous" would not be on it. His talent has never been questioned, but it may be if he continues to play the next couple weeks like he did the last few.

The problem for him is the coaches see the same thing we do, and they have the added responsibility of not playing him where he can hurt them, which takes away from being able to play him where he can help. It's a tough place to be.

The Jaromir Jagr situation is a little bit different. Another JJ to get in the way (Joining owner Jeremy Jacobs). Did the Bruins really need to get Jagr after Iginla passed and went to Pittsburgh?

I can read the responses from everyone now "Bob, you know nothing about hockey!" Fair, but everyone who claims they do is either lying or bragging. I claim no such thing, my eyes simply tell me what they see and my ears tell me what they hear the experts say.

The conclusion?

Jagr is slow, out of shape big time and a puck hog. Hell, we could have brought back Cam Neely, Bobby Orr or Ray Bourque and gotten the same quality of player right now. One of the craziest things about the NHL playoffs is the way teams manage their rosters before the postseason starts.

Need something? Go get it. Played here before? Doesn't matter! It's the reason Krug is now part of dinner conversations during games when he was having dinner conversations during the games not that long ago.

Tuukka Rask is Playing Like Tim Thomas

Well, at least he looks like Thomas Lite, but that's really all he has to be. The Boston Bruins are now playing as well as they have all year, and they have Toronto to thank. Now, if the Leafs had played to win instead of not-to-lose last week, things might be a little different.

So here we are, a week from Magic Monday and leading the Rangers and their bizarre coach from Concord 2-0. New York has been here before. They were down 2-0 to the Capitals, but came back to win in seven. Still, their "best in the world" goaltender has been anything but, yet we all know the risks ahead that overconfidence can bring to Boston sports franchises.

Us Worry?

We are Boston Strong. That brings with it things like apprehension, fear of failure and not counting chickens. As for Seguin and Jagr, I don't know what to do with either of them.

Seguin is the coaches' problem, and if he keeps playing like this, he will be a coaches decision (AKA, a healthy scratch). Jagr can't be fixed. He is what he is, and that is a slow, out of shape, puck hog.

Best we can hope for is a miracle game-winner against his old Penguins if and when those two teams meet. That would be the only way to silence the critics that claim this JJ is stealing the other JJ's money with his play.